The Police Association thanks the jury in the Eli Epiha trial for carrying out their difficult duty and finding the defendant guilty of attempting to murder Constable David Goldfinch.
Epiha, who had already admitted to the murder of Constable Matthew Hunt during the same incident in June 2020, didn’t dispute firing at Goldfinch, but maintained he was trying to scare away the constable.
Association President Chris Cahill says it was particularly harrowing for those connected to the officers, and many others throughout New Zealand, to listen to the facts of this case as they laid bare the extent of the violence perpetrated against officers Hunt and Goldfinch.
"The cold, calculated and deliberate murder of Matt, and the attempted murder of Dave were clearly demonstrated, as was Epiha’s intent and lack of remorse," Mr Cahill says.
"It was nothing short of disgusting to witness Epiha’s attempt to shift the blame away from himself."
Mr Cahill says it now rests with the judge to deliver a sentence which reflects the condemnation New Zealanders expect.
"This verdict and future sentencing will not bring back Matt, it won’t heal David’s injuries, and it will not make their fellow officers any safer.
"What it will do, however, is send a very clear message to police officers who take enormous risks in their daily job, that they are valued."
Inside this issue of Police News we have full coverage of the 88th NZPA Annual Conference, including the five recipients of the 2023 Bravery Awards and ask 10 questions of new Region 3 (Waikato and Bay of Plenty) director Detective Sergeant Ash Clements.