7 Jan 2022

Police seek witnesses after elderly woman sexually assaulted at New Plymouth home

6:28 pm on 7 January 2022

An elderly woman was sexually assaulted at her home in New Plymouth last month after her attacker had earlier help change her car tyre.

Photo: RNZ / Richard Tindiller

Police said they believe the woman met her attacker when she was taking a break from Christmas shopping in Waitara on 22 December.

While parking her car at Marine Parade (West Beach), the tyre was punctured and a man later offered to help change it, police said.

Police said the man later drove the woman to her home where the sexual assault took place.

Anyone who might have seen a man changing a tyre on a white-coloured Toyota Spacio (2005) in that area on 22 December, or saw the car travelling from Waitara to Bell Block between 12pm and 2.30pm is asked to contact police.

"We believe the Marine Parade area in Waitara was busy on that particular day and we're hoping someone noticed the man change the victim's tyre," said detective sergeant Pat Yates.

"As anyone would imagine, this was a traumatic ordeal for the victim, she is receiving support from family and friends".

Anyone with information is asked to contact police on 105 and quote file number 220103/4046.