A Napier man whose body has been found on a rural Hawke's Bay property has been described as a "gentle and compassionate person".

Alex Latimer was last seen alive on Sunday, September 30 at the Bay View BP service station in Napier, about 1.25am.

The 30-year-old was believed to be headed northwest to the Te Haroto area on the Napier-Taupō road.

His vehicle - a white 2000 Toyota Corolla hatchback - was found burnt out on Omaranui Rd the next day. The car's number plate was ZE8110.

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On Saturday, Latimer's body was found on a Te Haroto property adjacent to State Highway 5, about 55km from Napier. Two men were charged with assault, early in the investigation into Latimer's disappearance and police say more charges are expected.

Police are continuing to investigate the Te Haroto address where Alex Latimer's body was found on Saturday. Photo / File
Police are continuing to investigate the Te Haroto address where Alex Latimer's body was found on Saturday. Photo / File

A Givealittle page to raise funds toward Latimer's funeral, set up by Liv Talmage, has already garnered more than $4,000 in less than 24 hours.

The family have asked for privacy.

"At this stage we would like to kindly ask for donations to the family of Alex, so that they have the time they need to grieve, and so that Alex can be farewelled with the respect that he absolutely deserves," Talmage noted on the page.

The page also noted that Latimer was someone who would do "anything at the drop of a hat for his family and friends".

"This loss is not only a huge shock to the Napier community, but also to his family and wide spread friends, whilst also being completely undeserving."

This Te Haroto property is at the center of the investigation into the death of Napier man, Alex Latimer. Photo / File.
This Te Haroto property is at the center of the investigation into the death of Napier man, Alex Latimer. Photo / File.

Police expect to learn more about how Latimer after an autopsy, which was scheduled today.

Police investigators and ESR teams remain at the Te Haroto address, with a specialist search underway today.

On Friday, two men aged 26 and 24, were charged with assault and appeared in the Hastings District Court that same day. Both of them, by way of consent, were remanded in custody to reappear on October 25. They were likely to face further charges.

Eastern District Field Crime Manager Detective Inspector Mike Foster said they were continuing to appeal for sightings of Latimer's car between Te Haroto and Omaranui Rd, Napier, during the early hours of Sunday, September 30, and 8am Monday, October 1.


Earlier, Foster had said police wanted to know: "The route that they took to get to Omaranui Rd and if possible, we would like to know of any other sightings of that vehicle before it was lit, while it was engulfed in flames and also after."

To donate towards Alex Latimer's funeral, visit: https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/alex-latimers-funeral

If you believe you may have seen the car, or you have any other information which could assist the investigation team, please call (06) 831 0955. Information can also be provided anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.