Man charged over pointing gun at police helicopter says he was confused

The west Auckland man accused of sparking an Armed Offenders Squad (AOS) operation by pointing a firearm at a police helicopter admits it was him - but says he was confused and thought he was being robbed.

Dozens of armed police descended on the rural Massey property just after 1am after a man called them reporting the sound of a shotgun firing.

It turned out to be a false report, but while that property was being given the all-clear a neighbour pointed a gun at a Police helicopter, prompting a five-hour operation on Red Hills Rd in neighbouring Taupaki.

Police armed with guns and specialist dogs surrounded the property, using as few lights as possible because of fears they'd be spotted by someone waiting in the pitch-black with a gun.

Police spoke to Newshub at the cordon during the ordeal.

"Having seen our cordon and having the helicopter overhead for some two to three hours they'd be well aware that we are here," Inspector Kerry Watson says.

It took five hours for the 43-year-old resident to come out and at 6am they were taken into custody.

Newshub spoke to the gunman minutes after he arrived home from the police station. He wouldn't go on camera but explained his version of events.

He said he came outside carrying an air rifle and wearing a knife in his belt because he thought someone was robbing him.

Instead he saw AOS officers running around the edges of his property. He didn't know what was going on and they refused to speak to him.

He told Newshub he pointed the air rifle at the police helicopter but that it was far away and he had no intention of firing.

He said after that he drove to the nearby police cordon but they still didn't talk to him so he went home, had a shower and went to bed.

He said he got up five hours later because the phone kept ringing. It was the police - and when he went outside they were still waiting for him and he was arrested.

He said he's been charged with presenting a firearm.