The thieves who broke into the home of a recently deceased man have been described by his brother as the "scum of the earth".

Two weeks ago Gavin Lomas' brother Steven died in his sleep at his Steeles Lane, Rotorua, home.

The brothers were close growing up and Lomas described him as a "brilliant" man.

"He's my best friend, my one and only brother," he said as he held back tears.


Eight years ago Steven suffered a major stroke which left the entire left side of his body paralysed.

"He was in constant pain," Lomas said.

Before that he had studied computer science and was one year away from completing his PhD.

"He had a beautiful house and section, a really great high paying job, a wife and children."

Following the stroke Steven was unable to look after himself and the physical and emotional pain saw him turn to alcohol.

Lomas said the alcoholism was the most difficult thing to deal with, but he stuck with him through everything.

7 Nov, 2017 4:24pm
2 minutes to read

On Sunday morning he found his dead brother's window shattered, the house ransacked and valuable items missing.

"I am finding it very hard to be happy about anything at the moment. Then I come here and I find this," he said.

"These scumbags just don't realise all of the things I am dealing with. My friends are the only thing helping me to get through it."

The thieves took a microwave, deep fat fryer, washing machine, food and other household items.

Lomas, a volunteer firefighter in Mamaku, said he really cared about helping people and was left shocked that people could be so horrible.

"I hate their guts. I just can't believe these scum of the earth people.

"Imagine how they would feel if someone did this to their family, because my family certainly didn't need this."

Lomas said he was a great believer in karma and he knew it would come back to get them.

"The police have been very good, they really have been excellent.

"It's an extremely sad end to a very bright life."

Nena Rivers hopes the community will stick together and help police find the thieves who broke into her deceased friends home. Photo/Stephen Parker
Nena Rivers hopes the community will stick together and help police find the thieves who broke into her deceased friends home. Photo/Stephen Parker

The brothers' close friend Nena Rivers said she thought she spotted some of Steven Lomas' items for sale on buy, sell and swap Facebook pages.

"People need to know that the community are going to be sticking up for each other and calling the police.

"So many of these crimes are driven by drugs, families are being abused by this stuff and we need to look out for our neighbours."

Rotorua police crime prevention manager Inspector Stuart Nightingale confirmed police were continuing their investigations into the burglary.

"This is bad enough at the best of times, let alone at the address of a person who has recently died," he said.

"It is a real tragedy for the family."

Nightingale said there would be people who knew where the stolen items were or who would have noticed suspicious behaviour.

Any information in relation to this incident can be passed on to Rotorua police on (07) 349 9590 or by contacting Crimestoppers anonymously on 0200 555 111.