Whitianga Police Report for Monday 27 April to Monday 4 May 2015


Most of us would have seen the St John Ambulance advertisements on Buffalo Beach Road and Joan Gaskell Drive asking for volunteers.

A slightly different way to grab attention when they are seeking volunteers and hopefully it might encourage anyone who has been thinking about helping St Johns Ambulance to just give them a go.

Most of the volunteer groups in our area are in need of more members to share the load and they are all open to anyone considering joining them to come and have a look at what they do for the community.

Joining a volunteer group is an excellent way to meet new people and learn new skills while assisting your community.

This week our area has been targeted by burglars and I remind everyone out there to make it as hard as possible for people to steal your property.

Bank money at the earliest opportunity and lock valuables away.


27th - 1 x 21yr old local man for 3 x Warrants to Arrest and Breaching Bail Conditions.

1st - 1 x 65yr old local man for Cultivates and Possession of Cannabis.

3rd - 1 x 21yr old local man for Theft Ex-shop.


One domestic incident attended this week.

On the 2nd we attended a domestic incident on Cook Drive where the family contacted Police to remove a family member who had been drinking before the situation got out of hand.

On the 27th we attended a Threatening Behaviour incident on Catherine Crescent where a father was looking for his daughter at the wrong address and offended the occupants.

On the 28th a residential address in South Highway was burgled with alcohol and tinned food stolen, while of the 30th tools were stolen from a commercial premises on the other end of South Highway.

Also on the 30th a residential shed was broken into on Cook Drive and a chainsaw and bicycle were stolen.

On the 1st as per the arrest above a local man was apprehended stealing from a Joan Gaskell Drive premises, while also that day an offender attempted to break into a residential property on Joan Gaskell Drive without gaining entry. A business property on Mill Road was burgled on the 1st with money and alcohol stolen.


No drunk drivers apprehended this week and only a minor crash attended on State Highway 25 near Mill Creek Road on the 3rd where the driver pulled to far to the left of the road and slipped down the bank.

New footbridge at Hot Water Beach

A new footbridge has just been installed providing access from the Taiwawe car park (Bull Paddock) down to the Hot Water Beach cafes and shops.

The footbridge connects the Pa track access down to Hot Water Beach. It also means pedestrians don't have to cross the road to get over the existing bridge (over the Taiwawe Stream) and then cross back once they are over it.

The new bridge is 17 metres long and weighs about 5 tonnes. In the next few weeks we'll be building access footpaths on both sides of the bridge. On the northern side it will link to the existing car park and footpath and on to the Pa track to the beach. On the southern side it will link to the existing footpath and adjacent reserve area and on to the cafes and main car park.

The project was undertaken by Bridge It Ltd and cost $51,000.

Police saying more about fatal shooting incident in Thames

The incident in Thames yesterday where a man was fatally shot by the Police is generating a lot of interest around the Coromandel Peninsula.

The Police has issued a statement saying they are continuing their inquiries into the circumstances that resulted in the Police Negotiation team and Police Armed Offenders Squad being deployed.

As they develop a clearer picture of the events of the day, they would like to clarify that an initial media release describing the man as being “in custody” was incorrect.

The Police says this was a mistaken belief at the time based on initial information.

They confirm that the dead man was not in custody at the time of the shooting. The dead man is Vaughan William John Te Moananui, 33, of Thames. The Police were initially called to an address in Kopu in response to a call for assistance about midday yesterday.

While at Kopu, later that afternoon, the Police were informed that Mr Te Moananui was at another address in Thames.

The Armed Offenders Squad redeployed to that address and as they approached, found Mr Te Moananui.

The Police says he was called upon to surrender, however he presented a firearm at them, at which point he was shot. Despite the Police instantly undertaking CPR, he was pronounced dead at Thames Hospital a short time later.

The post mortem has been completed in Auckland and the cause of death will be determined by the Coroner.

A number of investigators from across the Waikato have been called across to Thames to assist with the scene examination, area enquiries and the investigation.

Inquiries are focusing on the activities of Mr Te Moananui yesterday and the preceding weeks.

The Police would like anyone who interacted with Mr Te Moananui recently, or saw any of the events from Saturday to please make contact with the Operation STROBE team at the Thames Police Station, Phone 07 867 9600.

Information can also be provided anonymously through the organisation Crimestoppers, phone 0800 555 111. Four investigations into this matter will run concurrently, including investigations commenced by the Independent Police Conduct Authority and the Coroner. District Commander Superintendent Bruce Bird says the incident was tragic for all involved.

Targa Bambina this month in Mercury Bay

The Targa Bambina Rally is coming to the Coromandel later this month. Thames Coromandel District Counncil says people need to be aware there will be some road closures.

The Targa Rally prides itself on being the "Ultimate Road Race" and the Coromandel gives drivers a real challenge while providing some exceptional scenic views along the way.

The Targa series allows competitors to compile points over each race leg to arrive at a series champion. These legs are a few times a year and called Targa Bambina, Targa Rotorua and Targa New Zealand.

The Targa Bambina leg will take place through the Coromandel during the weekend of 15 and 16 May. Mercury Bay will see the following road closures -

Friday 15 May from 3pm to 5.45pm - SH25 (WHANGAPOUA Road), starting from its intersection with SH25 (Tiki Road at Coromandel), to finish by the Castle Rock Café, 300 metres from its intersection with Whangapoua Road and SH25 (Te Rerenga Kuaotunu Road).

Friday 15 May from 5pm until 9am Saturday 16 May - Whitianga. The Marina car park entrance through to the intersection with Blacksmith Lane will be closed allow rally cars to park overnight.

Saturday 16 May from 7.15am to 10.30am -. Pumpkin Hill SH25 (TAIRUA WHITIANGA Road and Main Road), starting at House No. 1032 A/B (750m South of its intersection with Hot Water Beach Road) to finish at its intersection with Ocean Beach Road (just North of Tairua). Includes intersections with Boat Harbour Road (No Exit), Kydd Corner Road (No Exit) and Paul Road (No Exit),

TCDC says traffic marshalls will be in place to manage traffic.

New Chums subdivision application on hold

The applicants for the subdivision at New Chums Beach have put in a last minute notice asking Thames Coromandel District Council to suspend their application.
Public hearings were set down to start this Monday 4 May at 9:00am at the Council Chambers in Thames. A total of 187 submissions were received, with over 80 submitters requesting to be heard by a panel of three independent Resource Management Act commissioners.

“Late Friday afternoon we were notified by the applicants’ lawyers that there’s been a last-minute disagreement from one of the co-owners of the site relating to access arrangements to the beach,” says David Hammond, TCDC Chief Executive. “They say the disagreement makes the present proposal one which would now not be given effect to and they see no point in proceeding with Monday’s hearing until the dispute can be resolved.”

Through their lawyer, the applicants have apologised to everyone who is inconvenienced, especially the submitters and the commissioners and are requesting Council suspend the processing of the application.

“We are now trying to get in touch with all the submitters to alert them to the situation,” says Mr Hammond.  “We are also now getting advice on the best steps to proceed.”
Given the lateness of the notice, the applicants have indicated they will still attend the hearing venue on Monday where decisions can be made.

The application for subdivision has been made by Ross and Deidre Mear and is for a four lot subdivision, all 15ha in size, together with a fifth "beach conservation lot," 1.2ha in size. The beach lot is proposed as a conservation area, allowing for public access along the beach.

Full house at FAN launch

The Thames Toyota factory housed over 150 people, mostly employers who wanted to find out more about getting young people into the workforce at the launch of the Futureforce Action Network Thames-Coromandel last night.

The Futureforce Action Network (FAN) is made up of employers, educators, government and community organisations committed to creating better education-to-work opportunities for young people.

The guest speakers were a range of employers from the district who employ youth in their businesses - Grahame Christian, Managing Director of Smart Environmental, Peter Manning, Toyota Thames and Heather Moore, Unichem Heather Moore Pharmacy.

Youth speakers - including Darian Staples, a pharmacy trainee and Jake Leopald, an apprentice electrician - talked about the opportunities they were given and how it makes a difference to be given a chance and have someone believe in you enough to invest in your future.

Linda Caie, Project Manager at Smart Waikato, gave pointers and tips on future planning, selecting an employee and the importance of induction and mentoring.

With networking opportunities between the speakers, the room had a party atmosphere and many made great new connections, including the Whitianga Youth Group who found themselves chatting with TCDC Chief Executive David Hammond.

"We are proud to be one of the partners addressing an issue that is critical to the economy of the Coromandel, keeping our youth in the district," says Mr Hammond.

"If we grow our own workforce on the Coromandel, we grow our communities and businesses and the opportunity for families to flourish - fulfilling the Coromandel vision to be the most desirable area to live, work and play.”

Last night's attendees registered to be partners of the FAN network and now have a range of tools at their disposal to help plan work opportunities for youth, transitioning youth into the workplace and training and mentoring resources.

Whitianga Police Report for Monday 20 April to Monday 27 April


An excellent turn out to Whitianga’s ANZAC Service with the majority of our town attending.

I was very impressed with those in attendance standing fast, especially when the rain came as most weren't wearing raincoats as the morning had started out with fine weather.

There were no issues with any of the parades in our immediate area.


23rd - 1 x 21yr old local man for Theft and Breaching Prison Release Conditions.

24th - 1 x 20yr old Matamata man for Wilful Damage (x6)


One domestic incident attended this week.

On the 23rd we dealt with a Breach of Protection Order where a couple were arguing over custody issues and text messages were getting abusive.

On the 21st a residential property on Annette Place was burgled with the offender smashing a window to gain access.

The home owner is still to establish if property was stolen.

On the 22nd a car Unlawfully Taken from an Isabella Street address was later located on White Street.

On the 23rd a floral-coloured skate board was stolen from the wharf area and two gas bottles were stolen from outside a Clipper Place address on the 24th.

Also on the 24th number plates were stolen from a Joan Gaskell Drive car park and have been linked to a stolen vehicle located on Mill Road.

On the 26th a car was Unlawfully Taken from a party on South Highway and the offender crashed it a short distance from the address and decamped.

Enquiries are continuing with a named suspect.

As per the arrest above an intoxicated man caused damage along Cook Drive on the 26th and he will be able to explain his actions to a Judge.


Two drunk drivers apprehended this week.

20th - 1 x 30yr old local man 657/250 and also Driving Whilst Disqualified.

25th - 1 x 24yr old local woman 761/250

No serious crashes to report.

TCDC appoints Business Broker

Thames Coromandel District Council now has a single-point of contact to help big business and development projects navigate through the different Council departments they need to deal with.

Len Whittaker, a civil engineer who has been working in local government for 30 years and with TCDC for nine years, is now Council’s Business Broker.

TCDC says Len is available to business people to offer a strategic, high-level, all-of-Council experience to make sure qualifying projects follow a clear pathway through the bureaucracy. The paperwork is necessary, but not always easy or fun.

Large subdivision projects and business development initiatives often require input from staff in Planning, Legal, Health, Licences, Concessions, Building Consents and Infrastructure services.

TCDC says they want to make sure people who are investing in Coromandel communities receive everything they need from Council in order to drive their projects forward.

This will help retain and grow economic activity - creating jobs and opportunities for the people of the Coromandel.

Mr Whittaker is available for "pre-concept" meetings to discuss projects before they are lodged with Council to make sure everyone's on the same page.

Mr Whittaker obtained his New Zealand Certificate in Engineering (NZCE) qualification in 1984, specialising in civil engineering.
Since then, he's worked in roading, water supply, wastewater supply, stormwater supply and solid waste - all aspects that are crucial to subdivision development, which has been Mr Whittaker's focus for the last 18 years.

This work has involved him in engineering surveys, design, consents, construction supervision and project management.

He's worked on Whitianga Waterways, Pauanui Waterways, Matarangi Beach Estates subdivisions, Totara Palms, the new Kopu Bridge and the Kopu Structure Plan - which takes in the current redevelopment of the Kopu Business Park - just to name a few of  the many projects he's been involved in.

Most recently, Mr Whittaker has been TCDC’s Acting Area Manager for Mercury Bay, taking Sam Marshall's place for eight months while he was on extended leave.

In that role he developed good links with Council’s elected members and senior management.

"I know the go-to people and have good rapport with them," says Mr Whittaker.

"I can help build relationships and partnerships between developers and Council offices and departments.”


Latest business rest of site

Merv George Plumbing and Drainage

Master Plumber and Drainlayer, Eco Plumber, gasfitter.


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The Mercury Bay Informer is a highly popular community newspaper, based in Whitianga. The paper is distributed throughout the Coromandel Peninsula, coast to coast from Thames to north of Colville.