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Source: New Zealand Police (District News)

Attributable to Acting Southern District Commander Acting Superintendent Darryl Sweeney:

Police are responding to an ongoing incident in the lower South Island.

A vehicle of interest failed to stop for Police around 6:30pm this evening.

A pursuit was initiated and the vehicle came to a stop near Cromwell.

The driver has presented a firearm at Police, before taking a Police vehicle and fleeing the scene along State Highway 8.

The driver has then abandoned the Police vehicle near Signal Creek, and taken a vehicle from a member of the public.

The member of the public was shaken, but unharmed.

The Police vehicle was recovered. No Police issue firearms had been taken.

The male has then travelled south along SH 90, and continued driving.

The vehicle the male had taken has been recovered in Milton around 11:45pm, but he remains outstanding.

Police are actively searching for the man, with the Armed Offenders Squad in attendance.

We would urge the public to be alert, but not alarmed, and to report any suspicious activity in the area to Police on 111.

Further information will be provided in the morning.

ENDS

Issued by the Police Media Centre

MIL OSI