19/06/2020 12:31 PM AEST | Updated 19/06/2020 12:32 PM AEST

New Zealand Police Officer Shot Dead During Routine Traffic Stop

The offender is still at large.

New Zealand police were hunting for a person who shot one officer dead and seriously injured another on Friday during a routine traffic stop before driving away in the city of Auckland, Police Commissioner Andrew Coster confirmed.

A member of the public was hit by the vehicle as the suspect drove off, police said in a statement on Twitter.

“Cordons are in place and schools in the immediate area have been advised to lock down,” Superintendent Naila Hassan, Waitemata district commander, said in a statement.

Gun crime remains relatively rare in New Zealand, where laws have been tightened twice since a gunman killed 51 Muslim worshippers in Christchurch last year in the country’s worst peace-time mass shooting.

The country’s lawmakers on Thursday passed legislation to create a new firearms registry that licence holders will be required to update as they buy or sell guns.

Reporting by Renju Jose.