Teenagers charged with murder after road rage attack

Police have located a black BMW they last night said was involved in the crash. Photo: NZ Herald
Police have located a black BMW they last night said was involved in the crash. Photo: NZ Herald

Two teenagers, aged 17 and 14, have been charged with murder after a suspected road rage attack in Auckland’s Beach Haven left one man dead.

A massive police probe today led them to the Far North, where two boys were arrested early this morning.

The pair have been remanded in custody and are due to appear in the North Shore Youth Court on Monday, charged with murder.

Today, a shaken local laid flowers by the roadside where just hours earlier he tried to save the life of a young man killed in front of him.

It’s believed the victim was attacked inside his car and suffered multiple stab wounds to his neck, chest and leg.

Red-eyed and at times on the edge of tears, he told The New Zealand Herald there was “so much blood” after the attack.

He said he saw two young men attacking a third man in a car on Beach Haven Rd in Beach Haven last night after what sounded like a minor road crash.

Police later tracked down a black BMW sedan they believed was involved. 

Today, the victim’s devastated family was asking for privacy while mourning the “loveliest, kindest boy”.

“Our family are not prepared to make any statement, tribute or comments at this time. As you will be aware, it is an open investigation, so it’s important the police do their thing and we ask that the media allow us to grieve privately,” a family member said.

The resident who rushed to the victim’s aid, meanwhile, said he and others had applied pressure to the man’s wounds.

They also found the man’s name in his wallet and tried to console him.

“I find comfort in hoping that he found comfort that there were people there talking to him ... when he passed,” the resident said.

“I never met the guy, but to be with someone in their last moments like that, that’s quite a connection.”

A Beach Haven resident and others on the street said they initially heard the bang of a car crash.

The crash took place near a traffic island.

Photos from the scene showed damage to the front bumper of the victim’s car.

One resident said he saw that two young men had already left their black car and were allegedly attacking the victim - who looked to be aged in his 20s to 30s - in the car behind.

The attack lasted just seconds.

The resident rushed to the victim’s car and was already on the phone to 111 before he reached it, simultaneously screaming for help from nearby neighbours, who were emerging from their homes.

He, his partner and a third woman trained in CPR tried to provide first aid and apply pressure to the wounds, while other residents started directing traffic.

“But there was just so much blood. I’ve never seen nothing like that before,” he said.

They saw wounds on the victim’s face and neck area, as well as multiple wounds on his leg, but the worst injury was to his chest, the resident said.

“That was our main concern, his chest,” he said.

The extent of the injuries was like something out of a “movie”.

“You just don’t ever expect to see that right in front of your face,” he said.

The first police car was on the scene within about a minute. As many as five patrol cars arrived soon after.

At the instructions of police, residents helped remove the victim from his car and place him on the footpath so more concerted efforts could be made to revive him.

“But I personally believe he was already gone,” the resident said.

“He was pretty much fighting for his life by the time I had even got to the car and managed to apply pressure to his wounds.”

Another resident said she also heard the commotion and rushed onto the street with her daughter, who helped apply CPR.

But the trauma left her daughter badly shaken.

“We had to bring her back home and settle her down because she couldn’t stop,” the woman said.

“She started crying, she broke down.”

The incident has shocked the tightknit Beach Haven community, Northcote MP Shanan Halbert said, who today sought reassurances from the NZ Police area commander that everything was being done to catch those responsible.

An unconnected large community event “just up the road” this morning, called ‘Celebrating Communities’, was a sombre affair, Halbert said, with locals displaying tension and concern.

“It’s an inter-generational community, and no doubt families that have been directly involved in this will have children attending local schools or will be known to other community members when those details are released, and that’s worrying in a sense,” Halbert said.

“I’m concerned about what we do as a community over the next couple of days to just restore peace and support everyone through it.”