Police working on Operation Frankfort, the homicide investigation into the killing of 51 year-old Brett Fraser, have released new details about what is believed to have taken place on the night Mr Fraser died.
Mr Fraser and his flatmate were attacked on Tuesday October 21, in an industrial warehouse in Westech Place, Glen Eden. The pair lived together in the warehouse and had been friends for more than 30 years. Mr Fraser's flatmate was also attacked and suffered head and arm injuries.
Based on witness information, Police are considering the possibility that the incident was motivated by a cannabis robbery.
Three male offenders are believed to have arrived at the property at around 9.30pm on the night of the incident.
Mr Fraser's flatmate was running a cannabis growing operation inside the property and had recently harvested his plants. On the night of the attack he described hearing Mr Fraser call out to him. As he came downstairs he has described being assaulted by a man wearing a balaclava and holding a sharp object. He was then ordered upstairs to show the offenders where his cannabis was located.
He complied fully with their demands and handed over the cannabis, which was in 3 plastic containers (approximately 3 litre-sized each). The offenders fled.
Mr Fraser lay wounded at the bottom of the stairs and despite first-aid attempts by his flatmate and emergency services, he was unable to be revived.
A pair of black motorcycle leathers, a jacket and pants are also thought to have been taken by the offenders. The leathers are described as home-made, the jacket is a size 5XL and the leather pants have approximately 116cm waist.
Detective Senior Sergeant James Bothamley, Operation Frankfort, says; "Our information to date suggests that Mr Fraser had nothing to do with his flatmate's cannabis activities, he was an innocent person who has been attacked and killed as a result of this crime. Someone out there may well have been offered cannabis at around the time this happened, or they may have noticed someone selling the motorbike leathers we have described. If you can help us then please get in touch."
Police are also appealing for two men who were seen in the area at the time of the attack to make contact with the enquiry team.
The two men were seen walking on Westech Place and had come from the direction of Brandon Road, at around 9.30pm.
They are described as the following:
1. Male Maori
Carrying a black and white-striped shopping bag
Wearing a t-shirt and black 'dickies' style shorts.
2. Male Maori
Described as being shorter than the first male
Wearing a t-shirt and knee length shorts
"These men could have information that they don't realise is key to our investigation. They also need to be eliminated from the enquiry so if it's you, or you know who it might be, then please get in touch with the Op Frankfort team" says Det Snr Sgt Bothamley.
Mr Fraser's flatmate is still recovering from his injuries and says, "My flatmate (Brett Fraser), he was an innocent man, they should have left him completely alone".
Anyone with information is asked to contact Operation Frankfort on 09 839 0623.
Information can also be given anonymously to the organisation Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Issued by Beth Bates/Waitemata Police