Bay of Plenty standoff over

Taupo Police Area Commander Inspector Warwick Morehu, the liaison officer, talks to gunman's family after the standoff (Wilhelmina Shrimpton)
Taupo Police Area Commander Inspector Warwick Morehu, the liaison officer, talks to gunman's family after the standoff (Wilhelmina Shrimpton)

The mother of a man alleged to have shot a number of police officers in the Bay of Plenty says she's relieved the ordeal ended peacefully.

The man surrendered himself this morning after being holed up in a house near Kawerau since yesterday.

"This is what we wanted all along and we felt we couldn't do it without whanau intervention," his mother told Newshub.

"We believe that maybe the police might be able to use this as an example of how it can work, rather than going in guns blazing."

She said she believed her son was "probably a bit clearer in his head" today.

"He would have been scared yesterday, and frightened."

Whanau spokesman Reverend Wayne Te Kaawa says the man was scared police would "shoot him on site".

"Our boy had been contacting members of the family and saying that if the family are allowed to go in, he would surrender and come out with them."

Police Commissioner Mike Bush said the man will now be given a medical check and taken to Whakatane police station, where he will be interviewed.

"This welcome development follows lengthy contact throughout the night with the individual by police negotiators and other police staff," said Cmmr Bush, who also thanked the public for their support.

"It is heartening to see the goodwill we receive during such events, and we value this very much."

A police cordon had been set up around the scene on Onepu Spring Rd while police negotiated with the man.

Family and friends gathered at the cordon, growing increasingly frustrated as police refused to let them enter the area to talk to him. After the suspect was taken away, they performed a karakia.

The man's mother says the family considers themselves lucky the situation was defused.

"We've got a big bridge to get over, that's the next step, but our first step was to try to get involvement and they've allowed that through discussions and negotiations with top-level MPs and also down to police, so we're really lucky."

Bay of Plenty standoff over

Family say a karakia as the standoff ends (Wilhelmina Shrimpton)

The standoff began just before 11am yesterday when shots were fired at a police aircraft used to search for cannabis plants.

The armed offenders squad and police dogs were sent to the Otakiri address around 1pm.

One police officer shot during the standoff remains in hospital in a serious but stable condition, while two others have been discharged. A fourth officer, shot in the hand, is also in hospital.

Police believe the gunman used a shotgun and a .22 rifle.

Cmmr Bush said the two officers in Waikato Hospital are "in good spirits, despite the traumatic events which they have experienced in the last 24 hours".

Bay of Plenty standoff over

(Photo: Bradley Ambrose)