A home invasion at a rural Manawatu property turned violent
when a woman couldn't comply with her attackers' demands this
She suffered injuries to her upper body from trying to
protect herself, while one of the attackers left after
receiving a stomach wound from a pair of scissors.
Police said the 45-year-old woman got up about 6.40am at her
Opiki property to investigate a noise she thought might have
been her partner returning from milking.
Instead, she was confronted by a man armed with what police
believed was a knife.
Palmerston North Detective Sergeant David Thompson said
demands for "material items'' were made, however the woman
wasn't able to comply.
"That's when it became more violent.''
Another intruder then appeared and joined in the struggle. Mr
Thompson declined to comment on the exact nature of the
"We understand that during this time he has received a wound
to the stomach with scissors,'' Mr Thompson said.
The men then fled in a vehicle, and the injured woman
barricaded herself in her room and called police.
The offenders were not known to the victims, and police said
there had not been a spate of similar incidents in the area.
"Everything indicates that they are strangers to the
occupants. Whether it's a case of mistaken identity or an
opportunist [attack], it's hard to say.''
Police believe the offenders were not waiting for the woman's
partner to leave the house, but many residents in the area
left for milking duties early in the morning, Mr Thompson
Rural residents were advised to keep their doors locked.
Central police district communications manager Sara
Stavropoulos said it was unknown if the offender's injuries
were a result of the female victim's attempts to defend
"We haven't formally spoken to her. She's still at the
hospital in a very distressed state.
"We know she has taken steps to defend herself, but we don't
know any details.''
The victim was being treated at Palmerston North Hospital for
injuries she sustained to her upper body during the attack.
Police hoped to interview her later today.
The offenders were still on the run. Police wanted to speak
to anyone who saw a vehicle speeding and driving dangerously
in the Opiki area between 6.50am and 7.15am today.
A description of the vehicle was unavailable.
The first offender is described as Maori, with a noticeable
missing tooth. He was wearing dark clothing. The second man
was described as Caucasian with blond hair.
A scene examination was underway at the property, and six
police officers were working on the investigation.
Anyone with information was asked to contact Constable Nick
Parlane on 06 215 4962. Alternatively information can be
provided anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
- by Brendan Manning