A woman living next door to the man shot dead by police in South Auckland was almost hit by a bullet the 501 deportee had fired into their living room.
Tangaru-Noere Turia was killed by police gunfire on Thursday night when he emerged from his grandfather's house in Papatoetoe "brandishing a shotgun".
Police had earlier swarmed the street on Avis Ave after Turia, 34, fired through the window of his neighbour's home.
The Herald's understood a woman in that neighbouring house was almost hit by the bullet.
Turia had lived in Australia since he was six months old – and his grieving family intend to bring him "home" to Sydney where he will be laid to rest.
His mother, Moana Taverio, told the Herald the 501 deportee had struggled for four years to fit into New Zealand.
"He had lived all his life being Australian."
She said her son - known by the family name Taverio in Australia - had left Australia with mental health issues that had made his ability to integrate with New Zealand ever harder.
Turia leaves behind a grieving family in Australia, including three children, aged 7, 8 and 14.
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He was the eldest of Taverio's five children.
Taverio said the family was intending to bring his body to Australia. "We have made plans. We're going to bring him home."
Taverio said the night her son died, he had spoken to his 14-year-old son by Facetime.
"He was just trying to let the son know, 'I love you - I love you so much'.
"They were laughing. He was joking around with them."
Turia's confrontation with police came four years after he was deported from Australia and had his visa cancelled over what Taverio said was a domestic violence incident.
The deportation took place under the "501" scheme, named for the section of the Australian Immigration Act introduced in 2014 that allowed visas to be stripped from those considered to have disqualified themselves on "character" grounds.
It has resulted in a steady stream of those with New Zealand citizenship return even if their only connection was being born here.
"My son was one of many kids sent back," said Taverio. "But he just didn't fit into the environment. He had no idea of what to do or how to do it.
Taverio said Turia continued to receive mental health treatment in New Zealand, as he had in Australia, although believed it extended only to medication and not one-to-one care and management.
The mental health issues were an ever-present part of Turia's life, she said, as evidenced by his behaviour during their daily phone calls.
"I feel for my son, for what he went through the whole time he was there. It's all his mental state. There's a voice always there, behind him, someone calling him a liar. He thinks everyone hates him, that everyone is after him."
"I can't imagine what he was going through."
Taverio believed the "501" deportation policy was unfair and wrong - "particularly for those with mental health problems".
She said during the year-long detention ahead of the 2017 deportation, she had written to Australia's immigration authorities in a bid to overturn the decision - a plea that was rejected.
"They said my son was a threat to the community. That's not right. My son wasn't a threat to the community.
"I just feel the Australian government has something against New Zealanders. Our people come here, make a living and they work for the taxpayer. It's so wrong."
Minister of Foreign Affairs Nanaia Mahuta said concerns about Australia's deportation policy had been "consistently raised" by New Zealand, including in meetings between Prime Ministers.
"We remain concerned about the deportation of people who have little or no connection to New Zealand, in which they have minimal support systems in place."
She said the Australian government was aware New Zealand wanted to see "greater compassion" for those with long-term connections in Australia.
The comments follow tough words from Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern to Australian counterpart Scott Morrison, which has seen her describe the 501 policy as "corrosive".
In the 2019-2020 financial year, Australia used the "501" law to revoke 1021 visas, 477 of which were held by New Zealand citizens.
Of the 1021 whose visas were revoked, the deportees included 234 with drugs offences, 100 with child sex offences, 57 convicted of rape or other sexual offences and 23 convicted of murder.
It has been reported that Turia had absconded from electronic bail at the time he was shot, waiting for sentencing on weapons charges.