A man shot dead after an armed police stand-off this week was "in a bad place" but did not want to hurt anyone, his cousin says.
Pera Ariki Smiler was killed after brandishing his rifle in Upper Hutt, Wellington on Tuesday.
His Auckland-based cousin Dylan Smiler believed the 25-year-old wanted police to kill him.
He told Radio New Zealand his cousin was "in a bad place" but did not want to hurt anyone.
"For him to not shoot anyone when he had the chance to was quite a big sign [that] wasn't his intention," Mr Smiler said on Morning Report.
His cousin was passionate, driven, and had made plans to record music with him, he said.
Smiler sparked an armed police response after firing two shots on Tuesday.
Police were first called to the incident at McDonald's restaurant in Upper Hutt at 12.39pm and were at the scene three minutes later.
Smiler was before the courts charged with benefit fraud.
He had been scheduled to appear in the Hutt Valley District Court at 10am today.
A warrant for his arrest was issued on June 2.
Wellington police district commander Sam Hoyle said a post-mortem would be carried out today and police were supporting Smiler's family.