Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern responds to the fatal stabbing of a man in an Auckland dairy last night. Video / NZ Herald
An inquest is being carried out today on the body of the dairy stabbing victim as dairy owners plan a nationwide protest.
Janak Patel, 34, was fatally stabbed when he confronted a robber outside the Sandringham store he was working in on Wednesday night.
He had been working at the Rose Cottage Superette in Sandringham.
Detective Inspector Scott Beard, of Auckland City CIB, who is heading the inquiry, has repeated his call for anyone who witnessed the altercation that occurred around 100 metres from the dairy, or believe they saw the offender on foot, before or after the incident, to come forward and talk to police.
“We also continue to appeal to those in the community who know who the offender is, to do the right thing and contact us,” Detective Inspector Beard said in a statement.
Meanwhile, dairy owners have announced they will hold a nationwide protest after the death of Janak Patel.
They said more needed to be done to protect workers.
Dairy and Business Association chairperson Sunny Kaushal said the protest will be held once the funeral for Patel has been completed.
He said the small businesses want action, rather than empathy, from the government.
However, the initial priority will be to assist Patel’s family with funeral arrangements.
A post-mortem examination is being conducted today, police said.
Police also wanted to acknowledge residents living within the cordon and the surrounding areas and thank them for their cooperation, Beard said.
He also thanked those who had already provided information.
Cordons remain in place and are expected to be lifted later today or tomorrow.
Police have also set up an online portal for people to upload footage.
People can upload photos or video by going to here.
Police can also be contacted via 105 quoting file number 221123/3847.
Information can also be provided anonymously via Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.
Fund opens to help family
Auckland businesses are raising money to support the family of the dairy worker who was “senselessly killed” this week.
The GiveALittle page was created by the Dairy and Business Owners Group to provide financial support for the victim’s elderly parents after he was fatally stabbed in Sandringham on Wednesday evening.
“This could be any small family-run business,” the group wrote. “But it has left a law-abiding shopworker that had so much promise dead.
“Above all, it has cost a family a cherished loved one.”
The Rose Cottage Superette was lined with flower bouquets this morning as members of the community paid their respects. A candlelight vigil held last night attracted a crowd of 200, with another scheduled for Saturday evening.
The Dairy and Business Owners group said it planned to liaise with the victim’s family to ensure they were supported.