Christchurch homicide investigation: Friend pays tribute to David Bridgwater, police say family is 'devastated'

Family and friends of the man believed to have been murdered earlier this week in Christchurch are "devastated" and "absolutely heartbroken" at his death.  

David Karl Bridgwater, 38, died after he was found on Carisbrooke St in the Christchurch suburb of Aranui on Thursday. Officers are treating his death as a homicide. 

The search for the killer has stretched into a fourth day with no arrests made so far.  

Detective Inspector Nicola Reeves, the lead detective on the case, told reporters on Saturday Bridgwater's family was "really shocked" about what had happened. 

"They're devastated about the news of their son, their brother... he's a father. They're coping very well under the circumstances, it's very early days. They've got a really long road ahead of them," Reeves said.  

One of Bridgwater's friends, Michael Sturgess, told New Zealand Herald he was "absolutely heartbroken" at the death of the 38-year-old. 

"[He] was such an amazing and talented man with a heart of gold and a smile that would light up the room, such an amazing devoted father to his son and such a wonderful friend," Sturgess said.  

"As everyone knows he will be sadly missed by everyone gone but never forgotten. Your legacy will live on rest in love brother." 

Bridgwater last posted on Facebook on Christmas Day. 

"I hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and a safe holidays and remember it's not what's under the tree it's who's around it," he posted on Facebook.  

"I lost a few people this year that were very important to me and are no longer around Shout out to those who are struggling with There mental health but getting up daily no matter what. this time of year can hit worse Look after each other."  

It comes after Reeves asked the public to come forward if they've seen a green Holden Commodore possibly linked to Bridgwater's death.  

Reeves told reporters on Saturday a second vehicle of interest had been identified. 

"This car - a green 2003 Holden Commodore, registration BGE263 - is believed to have been in Carisbrooke Street at the time of David's death, leaving shortly afterwards," she said. 

"Police would like to hear from anyone who has seen this car since around 2am on 4 January and any time since then." 

It comes after armed officers searched another property on Saturday morning, on the same street Bridgwater's body was found - Carisbrooke St. 

"We expect to remain at this address over the weekend," said Det Insp Reeves. 

Meanwhile, police are still looking for sightings of the first car of interest, a 2006 Toyota Crown sedan (LEQ895). 

"I understand that people can sometimes be reluctant to speak with police so I would like to remind everyone that information can also be provided anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111."