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Upper Hutt gunman's ID revealed

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 9/09/2015
Pera Smiler © Facebook Pera Smiler

The gunman who opened fire in an Upper Hutt fast food restaurant before being fatally shot in an armed stand-off with police has been named as a 25-year-old local.

Pera Smiler was named by media outlets on Wednesday, about 24 hours after he was killed by police in the city's CBD.

Police are expected to confirm his identity later in the day.

His Facebook profile reveals he had worked on an oil rig in Western Australia and was going to the gym to get in shape to join the armed forces.

A tribute from Dahlia Smiler described him as a tortured soul behind beautiful eyes.

Smiler was also due in Hutt Valley District Court on Thursday on a charge of obtaining a document for pecuniary advantage, 3News reports.

Before he was shot Smiler told a store attendant who was attempting to talk him down that he was trying to get into the army, but was rejected because of his police record.

Aside from that exchange, not much is known about why he took a high-powered rifle into a McDonald's and fired a single shot, leading to much of the Upper Hutt business district being put into lockdown.

Witnesses say he was incoherently screaming as he paced back and forth on the corner of Main and Wakefield Streets.

No one else was hurt during the opening skirmish inside the McDonald's or later when the gunman shot at the police dog that accompanied the uniformed officers who eventually shot and killed him.

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