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111 call ends fugitive's 11 months on the run

111 call ends fugitive's 11 months on the run

Waikato Police are crediting the actions of a rural resident who saw something suspicious and rang 111 resulting in the arrest of a man who had been on the run for nearly a year.

Sergeant Damien O'Kane of the Huntly Public Safety Team said officers were called to the small settlement of Pukemiro about 4pm after a resident reported a couple acting suspiciously.

"The caller to the 111 service described what was going on as; "a home invasion," and as a result Huntly, Ngaruawahia and Road Policing staff attended the call.

"As a result of the caller relaying a timely and accurate description of the offenders and their car, Police stopped a Nissan Primera car on the nearby Rotowaro Rd as it travelled towards Huntly."

The occupants of the car, a 31-year-old man and his 24-year-old female passenger refused to cooperate with Police and pepper spray was used as he tried to avoid being arrested.

"He was subsequently identified as a man who had been actively avoiding Police since escaping custody last April who was wanted on 11 warrants to arrest. He faces three additional charges of resisting Police, possession of meth utensils and unlawful possession of ammunition as a result of yesterday's incident.

"His female accomplice was processed by way of pre-charge warning for obstructing Police."

Mr O'Kane said yesterday's arrest highlighted the value of seeing something and doing something- ringing 111.

"The incident proves that offenders don't just hide in towns and rural residents are just as at risk of criminals as their townie cousins. The advantage rural residents have over those in the City have however, is that they will have a better idea of who and more importantly, who doesn't, belong in their area.

"Police ask residents to shut the gate on rural crime and if they see something suspicious phone us, alternatively non-urgent information can be left anonymously with the independent Crimestoppers on 0800 555111."


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