Police Commissioner Mike Bush today welcomed the release of the Crewe homicide file review.
"This is a forthright and meticulous appraisal of the 1970 Crewe murder investigation.
While the review hasn't been able to answer all the outstanding questions surrounding this case, I am confident it provides a comprehensive appreciation of what actions Police have taken, over the past forty years.
“Deputy Commissioner Grant Nicholls has extended an apology to Rochelle on behalf of New Zealand Police for a number of identified shortfalls in the original investigation which led to missed investigative opportunities and allowed for continuing public speculation and commentary over the years. Police deeply regret the anguish this has caused Rochelle and family members. The apology also encompassed the fact that Police did not conduct an assessment and review of the original investigation either after Mr Arthur Thomas was granted a free pardon or after the Royal Commission of Inquiry released its findings.
"As a result of my eulogy comments at the funeral of Mr Bruce Hutton, I stepped aside from the review process to avoid any possible perception of a conflict of interest. I have already made a public apology for these comments and I reiterate that apology today. The review findings add to my deep sense of regret at having agreed to speak at the funeral."
Mr Bush thanked review head Detective Superintendent Andy Lovelock and his team for their thorough assessment of the 44-year-old case and particularly David Jones, QC, for his guidance and oversight of the review process.
“It was a very large piece of work and they put in a huge effort,” he said.
Please note Mr Bush has made a short video statement on the Crewe review, which will be available on www.police.govt.nz/crewe-review at 12 midday, Wednesday 30 July.
He is making no further comment and is not available for interviews.