December 11, 2023

Police reveal Ōpōtiki gang leader died after being hit by car

Officers believe a Holden Colorado was likely involved in his death.

Police have revealed gang leader Steven Taiatini was fatally injured when he was hit by a car.

Detective Inspector Lew Warner said the homicide investigation into Taiatini’s death is ongoing, and the burnt-out ute on Waitohu Valley Rd is a silver Holden Colorado 4×4. 

“The investigation team believe this vehicle is likely to have been involved in the death of Mr Taiatini.”

Det Insp Warner said Taiatini’s injuries were “consistent with having been hit by a vehicle”.

“Police are continuing to appeal for information about Taiatini’s death, no matter how insignificant people may think it might be,” Warner said. 

Police are particularly interested in hearing from anyone who saw a silver Holden Colorado 4×4 in the Ōpōtiki area on the evening of June 9. 

“We know there were several people who saw what occurred and know what happened on the night Steven died, and we urge them to come forward.”

Police are asking anyone with information to contact police via 105 by calling or online at and reference file number 230610/2652.

Alternatively, information can be provided anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.  

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