Man admits machete street attack

A man who chased down and cut another man with a machete in Palmerston North's Main St has admitted his guilt.

Toby Bryan Lepper, 26, pleaded guilty in the Palmerston North District Court yesterday to wounding with intent to injure, after the June 13 incident, as well as unrelated charges for assaulting police and driving offences.

On that day, Lepper was sitting in a car with his partner near the Work and Income office on Main St awaiting an appointment when a man approached the car and challenged him to a fight.

Lepper at first told him to leave him alone but the man became increasingly aggressive, taking off his jacket and challenging Lepper again. This time, Lepper got out of the car, wielding a machete.

The victim initially backed off, but returned when Lepper got back in the car.

Lepper got out again and chased the man with the machete.

The victim ran, but was knocked down by a slow-moving car.

Lepper caught up with him as he got back up from the road, slicing a 7-centimetre gash in the man's arm.

Lepper then returned to his vehicle and left.

He later told police he felt he "had to do something" or the disagreement would have continued.

Defence lawyer Carly Linton said the victim in the matter had tried to make contact with Lepper a number of times, and the matter has been referred to restorative justice.

Judge Gregory Ross remanded Lepper in custody to appear for sentencing in September.

Manawatu Standard