25 Jun 2013

Man accused of elderly attacks in custody

9:35 pm on 25 June 2013

A man accused of a number of home invasions and burglaries in Auckland has made his first appearance in court.

William Murphy.

William Murphy. Photo: NZ POLICE

Police had named William Murphy, 36, as a suspect in the crimes and he was arrested at near Puhoi on Monday morning following a car chase.

Eight elderly people have been attacked or robbed recently throughout Auckland, seven of them in their homes since 17 June this year.

While Judge Anna Kiernan was explaining the charges at the Auckland District Court on Tuesday, Mr Murphy made an obsence gesture to media reporting the case.

He faces 15 charges involving a number of kidnappings, robberies and burglaries in which hundreds of dollars and credit cards were stolen.

Other serious charges include indecent assault and aggravated robbery using a knife to threaten a woman to steal money and a credit card.

Mr Murphy also faces charges in relation to Monday's arrest, including failing to stop for police and stealing a car. He has been remanded in custody to reappear on 16 July.

Police are still advising elderly residents to remain cautious about people who come to their door. They say it is possible that such attacks are the work of more than one person and urge people to remain vigilant about their security.