14 May 2023

Gang members flood into Palmerston North after death

5:19 pm on 14 May 2023
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Palmerston North police say they're keeping an eye on an increased number of gang members in the city following a suspected homicide. The death happened a block from the police station. Photo: CC BY-SA / Michal Klajban

Police have named a man killed in a suspected homicide in Palmerston North, as gang members congregate in the city.

Raniel Kiu, 35, died in hospital after being injured on Thursday night in Dahlia Street, a residential street near the central city.

Detective Inspector Craig Sheridan said a post-mortem had now been carried out and Kiu's body had been handed over to his whānau.

Inquiries were continuing and a scene examination was still being completed at the Dahlia Street property.

"ESR [the crown science research institute] is assisting police with the scene examination, which is expected to continue until at least tomorrow," Sheridan said on Sunday.

"Police are working to speak with a number of people. This is likely to take some time - however we are committed to getting answers for his family."

Sheridan said police believed whatever had led to Kiu's injuries "was confined to a group of people", and there was no ongoing risk to the community.

He also said officers were keeping an eye on the increased numbers of Mongrel Mob members that had been visible in Palmerston North and Dahlia Street since Kiu's death.

Photos from local media showed crowds of people, many wearing red or patched, had gathered in the street.

"While there have been no significant issues reported, police will respond to any if they arise," Sheridan said.

Anyone who knows anything about what happened to Raniel Kiu or who was involved was asked to contact police, either by phoning 105 and quoting file# 230512/9437, on the police website using Update Report or anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.