1 Apr 2014

Man linked to death, attack on parole

5:33 pm on 1 April 2014

The man at the centre of a police investigation into a Christchurch homicide and an attack on two tourists on the West Coast was on parole at the time.

The 38-year-old was arrested about 3am on Monday after a five-hour stand-off near Fox Glacier following an attack on the two female hitchhikers on Sunday.

Police spoke with the man on Tuesday afternoon, but no charges have been laid regarding the attacks or the discovery of 24-year-old Amy Farrall's body in the boot of her Toyota Corolla outside a Christchurch supermarket on Sunday.

Police have established that Miss Farrall and the man lived at the same house for a short time, but it's not yet clear exactly what relationship they had.

The man is under police guard in Christchurch Hospital and is due to undergo surgery after suffering dog bites.

The hitchhikers - a 28-year-old German and a 27-year-old of Japanese and Dutch origin - were picked up on Sunday afternoon in Whataroa, about 30km north of Franz Josef, by a man driving a blue Nissan Terrano and were later found near the side of the road.

The German woman had been stabbed in the neck and the other woman's pelvis was broken. They are in Christchurch Hospital in a stable condition. Police spoke to them on Monday and hope to again on Wednesday.

Forensic investigations of Miss Farrall's house and the two cars continued on Tuesday and a post-mortem was carried out. Police said a number of sightings of the Toyota Corolla and Nissan Terrano have been reported.

Meanwhile, Corrections Minister Anne Tolley said she had been briefed on the situation and there was nothing to suggest that the man's parole conditions were not handled properly. She expected the department would conduct a thorough investigation into his management.

The Department of Corrections' national commissioner said initial inquiries show the man had met parole conditions as of his last report on 18 March. Jeremy Lightfoot said as a result of these events, an application with the Parole Board would be lodged to have him return to jail.