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Operation Waikato Release No 5

Operation Waikato Release No 5

New Zealand Police National News Release 3:47pm 18 January 2008 http://www.police.govt.nz/news/release.html?id=3638

Bay of Plenty Police District

Operation Waikato Release 5

18 January 2008

A post-mortem carried out on the body of a murdered has determined she died from serious head injuries but have not told Police what those injuries were caused by.

The head of Operation Waikato, Detective Senior Sergeant Greg Turner, said he believed a weapon had been used to inflict the injuries on 26-year-old Karen Elizabeth Aim of the Orkney Isles in Scotland.

"The post-mortem was inconclusive into what that weapon might have been so we're reiterating yesterday's plea for property owners to check their properties for anything untoward."

Miss Aim was semi-conscious when found lying on the footpath on Waikato St by officers called to reports of vandalism at a nearby college about 2.30am yesterday.

"I understand she was able to give the responding officers her first name but her condition was such that she died a short time later in hospital," said Mr Turner.

Mr Turner said there was no indication of any sexual violation in the attack but confirmed the victim's denim skirt had been disturbed.

Police are particularly keen to speak to the people responsible for the damage caused at the nearby Taupo Nui-A-Tia College where six windows were smashed about the same time as Miss Aim was assaulted.

"The longer those people are at large the more suspicious it looks for those involved, our priority remains the solving of the murder case, not vandalism.

"We would ask again for those people to make contact with us," said Mr Turner.

Police did not think it likely Miss Aim had disturbed the vandals given the timeline established so far.

"She has left the Element bar shortly before 2am, gone to the BP garage at the intersection of Ruapehu and Heuheu streets arriving at 2am and leaving at 2.04am, heading towards Spa Rd on a walk we estimate to take

10-15 minutes.

"The alarm at the school was activated at 2.07am so we don't believe there was sufficient time for Karen to be at the school," said Mr Turner.

"We do know however know that there was two taxis in the area where Karen was found and as well as a canvas of the bars we will be canvassing taxi companies tonight," said Mr Turner.

That bar canvas is scheduled to begin tonight, shortly after a blessing ceremony being held at the crime scene at 6pm.

"A memorial service is scheduled for early next week and arrangements are in place for Karen's aunt in the Manawatu to be able to travel up for that church service,"

"We have no suspects so far and the team is working very hard to identify Karen's movements before she died and this has all the makings of a particularly difficult murder enquiry," said Mr Turner.

"But we have a team of about 50 staff from across the North Island working on the case and I am confident of a successful resolution," he said.

ENDS

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