David Cerven, who was fatally shot by police in an Auckland park in 2015, did not intentionally invoke police to use lethal force to end his life, Coroner Katharine Greig's findings have revealed.

Cerven, 21, a Slovakian, died in Myers Park on August 2, 2015, after calling 111 to bring police to him.

The report revealed he had gambled thousands in his short time in New Zealand, and had a large outstanding loan which his colleagues said had caused him distress.

Cerven was being sought over three armed robberies on the North Shore and police said he claimed to be armed. He was later found to be unarmed.

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Some speculated Cerven had a death wish, that he wanted to be shot by police in a "suicide by cop" scenario.

The inquest looked into whether Cerven's own actions contributed to his death and if it was in fact "suicide by cop" – that is "whether by his actions Mr Cerven intentionally invoked the use of lethal force by the police, with the intent to end his own life".

The findings of the inquest stated: "The cause of his death was gunshot injury to the abdomen from a weapon discharged by a police officer that do not amount to suicide".

The inquest also looked into Cerven's state of mind leading up to the shooting, his background and evidence about his actions on the night of his death.

Six officers responded to the event, Grieg said.

The recount of the events in 2015 showed one officer fired three rounds from his Glock pistol and none hit Cerven.

Another officer fired his Bushmaster M4A3 rifle five times, hitting Cerven twice.

David Cerven was a Slovakian national who had only arrived in New Zealand from Slovakia just five months before his death.
David Cerven was a Slovakian national who had only arrived in New Zealand from Slovakia just five months before his death.

Examination of his body revealed although he was hit in three areas it was from only two bullets.

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"Injuries to Mr Cerven's legs were the result of fragments from the bullet that impacted the jaw."

No alcohol was detected in Cerven's system, nor evidence of recent use of cannabis and drugs in his blood.

The person who fielded the 111 call asked if Cerven had any weapons and he replied: "Yes I waiting thank you."

"The call taker took the answer as confirmation that Mr Cerven was armed. Based on this information, the gravity of the situation was immediately escalated for the police."

Greig said she was not satisfied at that stage Cerven was saying he had a weapon or weapons.

No further questions were asked to clarify if Cerven understood the question.

"It is possible that he did not understand properly what he had been asked and was merely confirming that he was awaiting the arrival of the police."

David Cerven was fatally shot by police in an Auckland park in 2015. Photo / Jason Oxenham
David Cerven was fatally shot by police in an Auckland park in 2015. Photo / Jason Oxenham

After police arrived, Cerven appeared agitated and did not comply with instructions, the report said.

Greig acknowledged officers believed Cerven had a gun in his hands and officers were going to be shot.

On that basis, they fired shots at Cerven to protect themselves and others at the scene from death or serious injury.

Greig said she found that Cerven's own actions "particularly after challenged by officers 12 and 16, wittingly or unwittingly, contributed to his death".

"The evidence is that Mr Cerven immediately pulled his hands out of his pockets and brought his hands up and together and pointed them in the direction of Officer 12 and 16.

"All officers present saw this happen and interpreted Mr Cerven's actions as being that he had a gun that he was bringing up and pointing at the officers."

Cerven was a Slovakian national who had only arrived in the country from Slovakia on March 20, 2015, just five months before his death.

He came with his girlfriend, Eva Vyrvova. Both were on a one-year working visa.

Three weeks before coming to New Zealand Cerven took out a 24,000 euro ($41,300) loan from his bank, there was further evidence he had taken another loan of 6,000 euros.

"The reasons for Mr Cerven's loans, taken out in Slovakia, are not clear. There is evidence that he was gambling online in New Zealand and whilst in New Zealand he made bets totalling almost $7000."

David Cerven, who was fatally shot by police in an Auckland park in 2015, did not intentionally invoke police to use lethal force to end his life, a coroner's findings revealed. Photo / Supplied
David Cerven, who was fatally shot by police in an Auckland park in 2015, did not intentionally invoke police to use lethal force to end his life, a coroner's findings revealed. Photo / Supplied

The report said colleagues found paying back the loan was a stressful topic for Cerven and was the only thing that made him upset.

Cerven had told his employer he had been part of the American Foreign Legion and had been in the Iraq war.

He said he had been shot while on a mission and that the legion had refused to pay for his surgery so he had to borrow money from his mother.

He told the employer he was in New Zealand to earn money to pay her back after she had to take out a loan on her house to pay the bill.

Evidence from Vyrvova said he had not been in the army or fought in any war.

"Cerven also told workmates at Watertight he had been in the Iraq war. He told them that his knee was injured when a convoy got blown up and he was hurt as a result of the explosion.

"He said that the explosion occurred because he had not followed an order to kill a child and the army would not pay for the surgery."

He was described by his employer as hardworking and reliable, and was referred to a immigration lawyer to extend his stay in the country and seek citizenship.

"According to a colleague who went with him, the meeting did not go well as the lawyer advised Mr Cerven that without having the requisite skills and the experience he would not be able to stay longer."

Cerven's colleagues noticed he was upset he would not get a visa extension.