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Waihi Beach stabbing turns into homicide investigation

3 January 2013; 5.30pm

Operation Brad; Waihi Beach stabbing turns into homicide investigation

An investigation into the stabbing of a visitor from Queensland outside a caravan parked in the driveway of a Waihi Beach home early on Tuesday morning has been escalated to a homicide investigation.

Detective Inspector Chris Page of the Waikato CIB said 64-year-old Robert Murray WILKINSON died in the Intensive Care Unit of Waikato Hospital today and NZ Police wished to express their sympathies to his family.

"As a result of this latest development what was an investigation into a stabbing is now a homicide investigation and a post-mortem examination will be conducted in Auckland tomorrow to try and determine the cause of his death.

"To that end over 30 staff are currently actively working on the enquiry including officers from across the Waikato and staff from Counties Manukau, Auckland and Bay of Plenty Police Districts."

Mr Page said a forensic examination was conducted yesterday but a scene examination is continuing at the address where the incident happened.

"In addition to that, officers who had been engaged on the area canvas are now carrying out various area searches as we seek to identify and locate the object used to cause Mr WILKINSON'S injuries."

"Another major part of our enquiries is identifying who was in the area before and after Tuesday's attack. Yesterday we requested images taken from the area during New Year's celebrations be sent to Police and we would like to repeat that request."

Mr Page said it wasn't necessarily the person whose photo was taken Police are interested in.

"You will probably know that person, it's the people who may be in the background or off to the side we are interested in. If you took images between 12.30am-1am on Tuesday morning around where Mr WILKINSON was attacked, please send them to Thames@police.govt.nz with the names of whoever you can identify in the picture.

"The tragedy that has befallen Mr WILKINSON'S family is one felt by the greater Waihi Beach and Waikato communities and we ask anyone with any information to contact us.

"Lastly we would like to appeal to the offender and/or their associates. This matter is now a homicide investigation and can be resolved by the persons involved making contact with us or our team locating them. We ask that if you know who was involved or were involved you make contact with Police."

Information for the Operation Brad Homicide team can be left with Police on 07 858 6200 or via email at Thames@police.govt.nz

Alternatively information can be left anonymously with Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

ENDS

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