8.05 pm

'Incredibly tragic': Teenager dies after bus hub 'stabbing'

A 16-year-old boy has died after a suspected stabbing at Dunedin's bus hub this afternoon. 

Detective Senior Sergeant Kallum Croudis, of Dunedin, said the boy died in hospital this evening. 

"A teenage male was taken into custody immediately following the incident and will appear in Dunedin Youth Court tomorrow," Det Snr Sgt Croudis said. 

"This is an incredibly tragic situation for all involved and we are working to support the victim’s family, who are understandably distraught at the sudden and violent loss of their loved one."

The Trinity Catholic College pupil was rushed to hospital after emergency services converged on the scene about 3.10pm.

People were heard saying "he's been stabbed" as the victim was being taken away in an ambulance.

A number of people were taken into the nearby Dunedin Police Station.

Trinity Catholic College Principal Kate Nicholson told parents the school was "shocked and saddened" by the incident.

"We realise some of our students may have witnessed this event or be significantly affected by it. We encourage you to speak with your child about this."

Photo: Gregor Richardson
Photo: Gregor Richardson
The incident in Great King St was reported to emergency services just after 3pm, when scores of school pupils congregate in the area.

Det Snr Sgt Croudis encouraged anyone who witnessed the incident - especially those with photos or video - to contact Dunedin Police. 

It is the latest in a series of violent incidents at the bus hub, including a teenage boy who was punched in the face in an unprovoked attack last week

Dunedin high school pupils Rohan O'Shea and Alice Johnston, who are presidents of the Joint Dunedin Student Council, said safety at the bus hub was a long-standing issue.

"No student should be unsafe on their way to or from school.

"The safety of the bus hub has long been an issue we have raised with NZ Police and local government, without substantive measures taken, we need action now."

A flood of comments of the ODT Facebook page questioned how the assault could happen so close to the Dunedin Central Police Station. 

"I find it ridiculous that this is directly outside a police station yet it is one of the worst streets in Dunedin," a commenter said. 

Another said they avoided the bus hub because of safety fears "even though police station is right there". 

A police photographer at the scene. Photo: Stephen Jaquiery
A police photographer at the scene. Photo: Stephen Jaquiery
"How does this happen outside a police station? Why don't the police have control of the bus hub, when it's in their neighbourhood and they know it’s volatile area?" another person commented. 

Otago Regional Council transport manager Julian Phillips said one bus stop was temporarily closed following the incident but all stops and services were back to normal.

"We continue to work with the Dunedin City Council on improving safety at the hub by employing security guards (funded jointly by DCC and ORC). The security guards also travel on the buses.

"Security cameras are also in the area."

Tramways Union secretary Philip Matthews said that on the whole, the safety at the bus hub was "really good".

"You can't stop some of these things, but on the whole it has been very safe in there."

Security guards had been a big help in calming things down and hopping on buses every now and again, he said. 

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