21 Sep 2009

Student film scene stormed by armed police

1:58 pm on 21 September 2009

Police in Hamilton say a student film project involving firearms nearly ended in tragedy, when the Armed Offenders Squad responded to what they thought was a robbery.

A group of armed youths had been reported loitering outside Peachgrove Foodmarket on Sunday morning.

Officers set up cordons before storming the store and levelling their weapons at the group of actors.

Inside, they found media arts students from the Waikato Institute of Technology with a shotgun, a scoped air rifle and four air pistols.

A producer had cleared it with the police to film on Friday and Saturday, but not Sunday - and the police say they have to treat sightings of firearms as a genuine risk.

Wintec says a producer had cleared the filming with police for Friday and Saturday, but not Sunday. Police say they have to treat sightings of firearms as a genuine risk.

Police and Wintec were to meet on Monday to ensure there will be no repeat of the incident.