A man who was threatening police with a machete died on his way to hospital after an officer fired one shot and hit him in the shoulder, police say.
Police were called to a domestic violence incident between a man and a woman in Waikanae, north of Wellington, about 11pm last night.
Police were told the incident involved a knife, however the man drove off before officers arrived. Police found the woman was not harmed when they arrived.
Officers later sighted the man's vehicle in the Mana Esplanade area, 35km south of Waikanae.
The Acting District Commander for Wellington, Superintendent Steve Kehoe, said at approximately 12.30am the man approached a police car, armed with a machete.
Mr Kehoe said early indications were that the officer, who was alone, responded by firing one shot, which hit the 44-year-old man in the shoulder.
He was given immediate first aid before ambulance staff arrived, but died on the way to hospital.
Speaking to media this afternoon, Mr Kehoe couldn't say what warnings the officer gave before firing, saying investigations into the incident were in their early stages.
Police said the exact details of the incident and the shooting would be the subject of several investigations being carried out, including one by the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA).
Mr Kehoe said he was satisfied the officer acted in accordance with police policy.
Police said they had been carrying out a scene examination and had also found an air rifle in the car the man had been driving.
Officers were speaking with the man's family and providing support.