Police hunt gunman who fired on officers

There were about 30 shots fired about 15 of them hitting the front windscreen of the police car- officers escaped without injury

An armed police cordon around part of Morrinsville remained in place overnight, after a gunman shot at police on Sunday morning.

"A short time later, within a minute, a second police vehicle with two police officers arrived at the scene and they engaged the offender where a substantial number of rounds were exchanged between police and the offender" before those two officers also took cover.

The police said a speeding auto an officer was chasing pulled over and one of the three people inside fired shots from a military-style semi-automatic rifle.

Minutes late a police helicopter arrived.

A manhunt is on for the gunman who shot at police following a pursuit in the Waikato last night.

She said the family, including her four young children, were asleep at their home on Avenue Road when they woke to the gunfire.

A Morrinsville resident says the incident involving police and a speedy driver was "very close to home".

Craig Burmester and his wife woke to the intense gunfire in the early hours of the morning.

The officer dived for cover before calling for backup.

"Then a little bit later we saw four figures running towards our house".

The officer took cover in nearby farmland and called for back-up.

The police officers involved have no physical injuries and police will be providing them with support, he said, adding the two people being spoken to are also not injured.

He said the whole ordeal was unsettling.

"I don't know if they were running away from the gunfire, I think they were". "It's pretty scary. You could hear two different gun sounds, and quite a few shots went off".

Police say no one was injured in the gunfire, which happened on Kuranui Road, to the south of the town, around midnight Saturday.

"Our focus right now is on locating the outstanding offender and we would like to hear from anyone with information that may assist our investigation".

She and her husband ended up staying up most of the night.

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"A lot of the time that we were awake for those six hours we certainly contemplated hiding in the cupboard, or [saying] 'which is the safest room in the house?'"

The woman told Fairfax that when she rang police, she was told to grab the four children from their beds.

She said the police have been keeping in touch with updates and information about road closures.

That helped ease her concerns, but she hoped life would soon be able to return to normal.

"We would urge any people in the community to be extremely vigilant".

After an officer gave chase the offender pulled over on Kuranui Road and fired at the officer using a military-style semi-automatic weapon.

Yesterday, police described the chilling moment the gunman got out of his auto, then stood and aimed his weapon at an officer before firing a volley of bullets at him.

The offending vehicle, a 2015 Holden Commodore.

The area was quickly cordoned off and the Waikato Armed Offenders Squad arrived to safely retrieve the three staff from the area.

"At this stage we believe there was one other male in the vehicle, believed to be the gunman, and we have a team of approximately 30 people, including AOS staff, working to locate him".

However the gunman remains at large.

Police had attempted to stop the speeding vehicle on Thames St, Waikato District Commander Bruce Bird said.

Mr Bird said it was a surreal situation.

A man armed with an assault rifle has unleased a hail of bullets at police officers during a "quite frightening" response to a speeding incident in the Waikato town of Morrinsville.

The police officer withdrew immediately from the scene and as he did so came under further fire from the offender, he said.

It was unknown if the offender was still in the Morrinsville area.

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