31 Dec 2019

Papatoetoe deaths: Businesses offer support for critically injured child

4:21 pm on 31 December 2019

Police continue to investigate after two people were found dead at a South Auckland property yesterday morning.

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Flowers left outside the house in Sunnyside Crescent, Papatoetoe. Photo: RNZ / Matthew Theunissen

A four-year-old boy who was also found at the house is still in a critical condition at Starship Hospital.

As the scene examination continues, there will be a constant police presence at the Sunnyside Crescent address in Papatoetoe.

Police said today post mortems were underway for both of the deceased and formal identification process was yet to be completed.

Community support

Papatoetoe businesses offered their support to the child, with a nearby Liquor Hut store around the corner and a dozen or so business owners and locals holding a minute's silence this afternoon as a show of solidarity with those affected.

It was led by a local resident, who asked that his name not be used.

"It is so heartbreaking to know that our community has suffered such a tragedy," he said.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with the young child who lies in the care of Starship Hospital. We want to encourage our community to stick together and stay strong through these times."

The store set up a Givealittle Page and made a $1000 donation, with proceeds going to Starship Hospital.

Counties Manukau detective inspector Colin Higson said the incident had shocked the community.

"Police are supporting the families of those involved who are understandably devastated at what has occurred.

"We have spoken to a number of people as part of our ongoing enquiries and we want to thank the local community for their assistance with our investigation," Higson said.

Police are not seeking anyone else in relation to this incident.

What happened

Police were called to the scene around 9.50am Monday morning after receiving a report that a body was located inside the property.

They confirmed they found two bodies there - a man's inside the garage and a woman's inside a bedroom

A child was also located in the bedroom with critical injuries and was transported to Starship Hospital.

A neighbour, who did not want to be named, said they were shocked to see police cars arrive, as there appeared no signs of trouble the night before or yesterday morning. The neighbour said the family had a lovely Christmas and they saw them outside the day before.

Vigil to be held

A vigil will be held during a south Auckland community event following the incident.

A local liquor store will hold a moment's silence to commemorate the dead during its community barbecue later today.