Armed Fugitive Still on the Run in Palmerston North, Gunman Evades Armed Police as Explosions Heard

armed man on the loose in palmerston north
Loud bangs have been heard in Palmerston North on day 2 of the hunt for an armed offender

The suburb of Cloverlea has been placed into lockdown, schools and kindergardens closed, as police hunt for Caleb Kovaleski.

Police say they would like to speak to anyone who has information on the whereabouts of Caleb Kovaliski. There is a warrant for his arrest and he is considered dangerous and should not be approached. He has been on the run since he fled a traffic stop on the morning of 30 June 2016.

Caleb Kovaleski wanted man

Police mugshot of 26 year old Caleb Kovaleski

Our readers may remember Palmerston North was once famous for censorsing reports of its not inconsiderable crime problem, when all mention of crime was removed from the city’s Wikipedia page because it was scaring away professionals.

Here’s the story of the siege, as told by Twitter. In the last hour people have reported hearing loud bangs/explosions and possibly gunshots…but it appears that the offender may have escaped again.

Another armed incident in Palmerston North, Boxing Day 2016


“Armed police cordoned off part of a busy Palmerston North street as they arrested a man who emerged with his hands in the air and police rifles trained on him.

About 10am on Monday, armed police officers were telling people to steer clear of a strip of Ferguson St, between West St and Ngaio St. Cars and pedestrians were directed away from the area as they hunted for a man with tear-drop tattoos on his face…

Blaze Mehlhopt said he woke to find armed police just outside his house. “I popped my head out and I saw the gun by the fence.” His neighbour often walks up and down the street wearing Nomad patches…

A Ngaio St resident said he had seen a man with Mongrel Mob patches in the area several times in the past week. “About a week ago there was a couple of guys with patches walking past the house…”

Watch the video of the gunpoint arrest here