A man who was killed in a residential Sydney street was slashed with a samurai sword by people known to him, according to a police source.
It was earlier reported that the victim was shot dead with a single bullet to the head in the suburb of Forest Lodge, near Glebe, at about 2:30pm on Friday, leading police to raid a house 150m away in a nearby street.
Witnesses said they saw a man aged in his late 20s staggering down the street and collapsing after hearing an altercation.
The police source also claimed, however, that the gun discovered near the victim’s body was a replica, The Daily Telegraph reports.
It is not clear to authorities what actually caused the victim’s fatal injuries, although a man and woman were seen fighting with him before his death.
Police followed a trail of blood from the body to a nearby property on Hereford Street, and heavily armed officers carrying a battering ram closed in on the house.
A massive manhunt is now underway and a man and woman are on the run.
Pictures show the body covered in a white blanket surrounded by police at the intersection of Hereford Street and Minogue Crescent.
Police were called to the intersection around 12.40pm where Acting Superintendent Sam Crisafulli told reporters that the victim was ‘sadly found deceased on the street’.
A builder working nearby told 9 News he and his workmates had heard a ‘loud bang’ and thought someone may have been run over by a car.
‘One of the boys ran down to see if he was okay,’ the man said.
He said the victim had ‘a lot of blood coming out of his head’.
Another witness said she heard a lady yelling: ‘Get away. Get the f**k away from me’.
It was initially thought that the two suspects had run into a nearby premises to hide but police are now searching a wider area.
‘I am satisfied with a search of the area by police that these people that we are looking for are not around at the moment,’ Superintendent Crisafulli said.
The shooting is believed to have been targeted and to have occurred after a man and a woman were ‘seen in an altercation’ with the victim prior to his death.
‘We’ve spoken to a number of witnesses who tell us shortly before we were called a man and a woman were in an altercation with another man,’ Superintendent Crisafulli said.
‘It was a violent attack with very, very serious consequences.’
The gun is believed to have been found and a helicopter is scouring the area for the two suspects from the air.
‘A firearm was found at the scene but at this point in time we are not sure whether or not that was the cause of the injuries, that’s something we are going to be investigating,’ Superintendent Crisafulli said.
Police have said they are still not certain what caused the man’s fatal injuries.
New South Wales Police is appealing for anyone with information to come forward.
Detectives from the homicide squad are set to arrive on the scene and several crime scenes have been established along Hereford Street, including inside a private residence.
Minogue Cresent is closed in both directions between Bridge Road and Wigram Road due to the police operation.