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Name Release, Waitaanga Homicide

Police can now release the name of the person who died following the arson of a Waitaanga property on Wednesday 11 October.

Extensive DNA testing has revealed he was 55-year-old father-of-four Sidney Ross Bridson, known as Ross, of Waitaanga.

At approximately 7am on Wednesday 11 October, Fire and Emergency NZ were called to a house fire along Waitaanga Road. The home was extensively damaged prior to the arrival of emergency services and a body was later located at the scene. Enquiries revealed the fire was suspicious and a homicide investigation was launched.

While the extensively damaged scene is making the investigation an incredibly difficult one, Central District Police are working hard to determine what occurred and hold those responsible to account.

Police remain in contact with the victim’s family and they are being supported by Victim Support where needed.

The investigation continues to progress with enquiries leading Police to execute two search warrants, in relation to the investigation, one in Waikato and one in Waitaanga.

As part of the investigation Police are wanting to speak to anyone who was in the Waitaanga Road area between Tuesday 10 October and Wednesday 11 October. A number of trucks and private vehicles travel the road frequently and would have transitioned through the area on the day prior to and day of the arson.

Police are also wanting to speak to the driver of a white ute reportedly seen driving on Waitaanga Road around 8pm on Tuesday 10 October. He is not a person of interest but Police believe he may have information that could help our investigation.

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Police would like to thank everyone who has reported information to us, which has assisted in our investigation. Investigators have spoken with a number of people who have travelled through the area prior to the arson occurring, and on the day, however we are wanting to extend our appeal.

If you were in the area of Waitaanga Road between Tuesday 10 October and Wednesday 11 October, or have any information which may assist in our investigation and have not already reported information to Police, please contact us by calling 0800 287 453 or online via https://www.police.govt.nz/use-105, using ‘Update Report’ and referencing file number: 231011/2157.

Alternatively you can report any information anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.

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