Investigations ongoing into three recent Waikato homicides
Waikato Police are continuing investigations into three recent homicides across the district over the last two weeks.
Over 60 staff are working on the three homicide investigations which are also being supported by specialist staff from outside of the district.
“These are complex investigations that take time however we are confident that they will be resolved and those responsible will be held to account,” said Superintendent Bruce Bird, Waikato District Commander.
“Across the investigations there are a number of people assisting Police and there are also persons of interest.
Investigations to date indicate that these people have significant links with criminal gangs.”
“As with all investigations we are keeping an open mind on whether the homicides are linked, however inquiries to date lead us to believe the three deaths were targeted individual acts within the gang community,” said Superintendent Bird.
As part of the investigation into the homicide from Friday 13 July three arrests have been made.
Mitchell Curtis Rehua Paterson, 26, was found dead in water below the McLaren Falls bridge about 11.30 am Friday.
James Lee Green, 27, of Rangiuru in Western Bay of Plenty, has been charged with being an accessory after the fact to the murder of Paterson, a member of the Greazy Dogs motorcycle gang, by helping dispose of his body in order for another man to avoid arrest.
He also faces an additional charge of driving while disqualified at Cambridge on Friday.
A 49-year-old man has been charged with presenting a firearm at police and unlawful possession of a firearm.
And a 33-year-old man has been charged with breach of release conditions. All three have been remanded in custody.
“While three homicides in such a short space of time is concerning I would like to reassure the community that Police believe these were targeted attacks and the wider community is safe,” said Superintendent Bird.
Anyone who may have information on any of the three homicides that could assist with the investigations is asked to contact Hamilton Police on 07 858 6200.
Information can also be shared anonymously via Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.