Ten days after police shot David Cerven dead in a central Auckland park, they have confirmed he was not carrying the knife he is alleged to have used during a spate of armed robberies in the days before he died.
Auckland's district commander Superintendent Richard Chambers did not answer whether the 21-year-old Slovakian was carrying a firearm, but said the knife was not present during the standoff.
The new information comes more than a week after Cerven was shot dead after he alerted police to his location - Myers Park - on the evening of August 2.
Police said at the time that Cerven told them he was armed, and officers had no reason to doubt he was carrying a weapon.
Mr Chambers said today that "key witnesses" had been interviewed by police, and more would be spoken to in the coming weeks.
Background inquiries, including interviews with Cerven's associates and friends, over the past 10 days had helped give police a clearer appreciation of Cerven's personal circumstances and lifestyle.
"Items of interest" were found when police searched Cerven's Queen St apartment last week, but did not elaborate.
Last Tuesday, the Herald photographed two police officers removing bagged items from Cerven's apartment block, including what appeared to be two laptop computers and items of clothing.
Police anticipated being able to disclose further information as the investigation progressed, Mr Chambers said.
Cerven was named as a suspect in three armed robberies.
The first was the Harbour City Liquor Store in Glenfield on July 26, followed by Thirsty Liquor in Glenfield and a dairy on East Coast Rd.
He came came to New Zealand with his girlfriend Eva on March 20, on a working holiday visa and got work in Auckland as a labourer.
He told colleagues he was desperate to pay off a €30,000 (NZ$50,584) loan he took out before coming to New Zealand.
Former colleagues said he spoke of wanting to die.
A Go Fund Me page set up to support Cerven's mother Maria, who is understood to now be responsible for the debt, has so far raised $1285.
A friend who set up the page has called it "The loan that killed David Cerven".
Despite 10 days passing since the shooting, police have revealed little information about his death, which was caught on CCTV.
A post-mortem examination was carried out on the day after the shooting, but police did not answer questions about the number of bullets that hit Cerven, or how many were discharged from officers' guns.
Witnesses have described hearing as many as five gunshots, possibly more.
Cerven was born in Skovakia and was 11 when his father died.
He had a passion and talent for kickboxing and dreams of travelling to the US.
In 2012 he spent the summer months training as a kick boxer in Vancouver, Canada, where he made many friends.
Cerven stayed in Vancouver with his mother's friend, Renata Marko, who said he was well brought up, well liked, helpful and "very human".
After he returned to Slovakia, he continued fighting, but in 2014, a knee injury ended his career and his hopes of using his winnings to help support his mother, a teacher.
Questions police won't answer:
• Did Cerven have a firearm in his possession when he was shot?
• What was the item in Cerven's possession that police thought was a firearm?
• How many bullets hit Cerven?
• How many rounds were fired by police and by how many officers?
• What items of interest did police find in Myers Park?