A MAN shot by police on Tuesday morning was wanted as part on an ongoing police investigation, the region's highest ranking police officer has confirmed.
Western Region Commander, Assistant Commissioner Brett Greentree, APM, held a press conference at Bathurst Police Station on Tuesday evening after a man was shot by police during an arrest, in the vicinity of Lithgow Hospital, earlier in the day.
Assistant Commissioner Greentree said the incident unfolded just before 11am.
"Officers attached to Chifley Police District attended Lithgow Hospital where they attempted to arrest a man [as part of] an ongoing investigation," he said.
"Upon attending the vicinity a 34-year-old male has produced two knives and confronted police. As a result, one police officer has removed their firearm and discharged one round into the abdomen of that 34-year-old male.
"Immediately after, those police on the scene rendered first aid until an ambulance arrived and stabilised the male. After which he was airlifted to Westmead Hospital where he is currently in a critical, but stable condition."
He said while investigations are in their infancy there is an independent critical incident investigation underway.
"As you can appreciate it is in it's very early stages. There is a crime scene declared at the moment and numerous police at the scene.
"The critical incident investigation will be conducted by an independent police district within the Western Region. That will be the Central West Police District.
"Further to that, this investigation will be reviewed by an officer at Professional Standards Command and also oversighted by the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission," he said.
He asked anyone who was in the vicinity of the Great Western Highway Lithgow at about 11am who may have witnessed this incident "to please call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000."
He said thankfully, no police were injured in the incident.
"Fortunately, while the police officers involved were certainly shaken as a result of the incident, [they] are okay, which is fantastic."
When asked if the victim was a patient at the hospital, he said he was restricted as to what he could say.
"I can't go into the male's medical history but what I can confirm is that he was not an inpatient at the Lithgow Hospital."
Assistant Commissioner Greentree said three officers were involved in the incident; two detective senior constables and a uniformed senior constable, with the uniformed senior constable the one who discharged their firearm.
Regarding the police operation which was underway, he said he was again limited to what he could say.
"All can say is the male was known to police , but I won't go into further details with regards to specifics, but he was wanted for an ongoing investigation."
He was able to confirm police attended the hospital on Tuesday to arrest him as part of that investigation.
Speaking on the incident, Assistant Commissioner Greentree said NSW Police are confronted by dangerous and challenging situations each and every day.
He said while the officers are very well trained and well prepared to deal with such situations, they are "certainly shaken" and as such will be provided support which is appropriate throughout this process.
Assistant Commissioner Greentree said police have already spoken to some witnesses to the incident but are appealing to anyone who witnessed the event but has not yet made a statement to police to make contact.
"I've spoken to the critical incident investigator who indicated there are a number of witnesses that have come forward, but we certainly believe there are more given the vicinity (the Great Western Highway at Lithgow) and at that time of day so again another call out for anyone who may have any information what so ever to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000," he said.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content: