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Dunedin stabbing victim named as Enere McLaren-Taana

Enere McLaren-Taana

Enere McLaren-Taana is the player with his face turned towards the camera.
Photo: Facebook

Friends and family pay tribute to Enere McLaren-Taana, who died after a stabbing in central Dunedin yesterday.

Emergency services were called to the Dunedin bus center on Great King Street shortly after 3pm on Thursday following reports of an altercation.

McLaren-Taana was rushed to Dunedin hospital, where he later died from his injuries.

The 16-year-old went to Trinity Catholic College.

“We are devastated that a young life so full of energy and promise has ended in such a horrific and senseless way, and our hearts go out to his whānau,” said school principal Kate Nicholson.

Enere previously attended King’s High School.

“Our deepest thoughts and aroha are with his family and loved ones at this sad and difficult time,” said interim chancellor Darin Smith.

“Our focus has been on providing our students, our staff and our community with our love and support, and this will continue as we continue to process the events that took place yesterday.”

Enere Taana-McLaren

Enere Taana-McLaren at an athletics event in Christchurch while a student at King’s.
Photo: facebook screenshot

The Otago Rugby League also paid tribute to the talented athlete.

“Our community has been rocked by the news of the passing of one of our beautiful young people. All aroha to the Enere whānau at this incredibly difficult time.

“To any players feeling this today, please reach out to each other, to your whānau, to your ORL (Otago Rugby League) team manager. RIL Enere,” the organization posted on social media.

“He was a wonderful young man,” said a family friend.

Police said the investigation into McLaren-Taana’s death was still in its early stages.

A 13-year-old boy was arrested following the altercation and appeared in Youth Court this morning charged with murder.

The case has been transferred to the Dunedin High Court for a first appearance on June 11.

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