A BOY ran eight city blocks to the Gisborne police station yesterday to get help after he was allegedly threatened with a firearm as he walked along the footpath.
The 13-year-old rushed into the station at about 5pm to report the incident, which happened near the Palmerston Road-Disraeli Street corner.
Police immediately sent armed officers to the scene and mobilised the Armed Offenders Squad.
“We set up a cordon around the block Palmerston Road-Disraeli Street-Aberdeen Road and Carnarvon Street,” Sergeant Steve Sutherland said.
“Armed officers began a search of the area to locate the man with the firearm.”
An 18-year-old man was arrested at a house near where the incident occurred.
“The weapon involved turned out to be an air rifle, which was found in the loungeroom of the house where the youth was taken into custody by AOS staff,” Sgt Sutherland said.
“The 13-year-old told us he was walking along the footpath in Palmerston Road when he noticed a couple outside a house near the Disraeli Street corner.
“As he walked past he said he glanced at them. It’s alleged that moments later the man accosted him and pointed a gun at him.
“The boy backed off straight away and ran to the police station,” Sgt Sutherland said.
“He was shaken up by what had happened.”
Sgt Sutherland said the boy did the right thing in reporting the incident straight away to police.
“The arrest was made fairly soon after the AOS arrived at the scene but we kept the cordon in place, and armed staff on the street, for some time afterwards.
“This was during the search of the house and to ensure the scene was safe.”
Three women at the house have been helping police with their inquiries.
The arrested man was interviewed last night and charged with unlawful possession of an air gun and presenting an airgun at a person.
Police expect the man will make an initial appearance in Gisborne District Court today.
The man remained in custody overnight.