Apparent warning shot aimed at surfers almost hits 14-year-old boy

Apparent warning shot aimed at surfers almost hits 14-year-old boy

Outdoors

Apparent warning shot aimed at surfers almost hits 14-year-old boy

Three surfers, including a 14-year-old boy, have told police they were shot at while trying to ride waves at an isolated spot off New Zealand’s west coast.

The surfers – a man and his son, and the man’s surfing companion – had traveled to the area off Taharoa via personal watercraft.

According to reports, local surfers are notoriously protective of surf spots in this region. The three surfers told police that three shots were fired, and that one of the bullets struck the water about 6 feet from the boy.

Some of the more remote surf spots in New Zealand are guarded by locals. Photo: Wikipedia

“It is extremely dangerous and if you put yourself in the 14-year-old boy’s shoes, extremely frightening,” Sgt. Andy Connors, of the Otorohanga Police Dept., told the New Zealand news website Stuff.

Connors said the Aug. 16 incident is still under investigation.

Stuff reports that the surfers, after hearing the first shot, thought it came from a rancher shooting a wild goat or pig.

“The second one sounded a lot closer and the third one landed in the water adjacent to where they were,” Connors said. “You’d be fearing the worst and petrified [about] what’s going to happen in the next few minutes.”

Almost immediately afterward, people on the shore began to yell at the surfers in a menacing tone. The surfers fled to their launching point and contacted police.

Surfer magazine described surf spots in this area as being “heavily localized,” meaning that outsiders are not welcome.

 

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