Alcoholic jailed for assaults on partner

A Blenheim man has been sent to prison for three years for repeatedly attacking and beating his partner for more than a year.

Shane Timehe Kakahe, 39, was sentenced after earlier admitting three charges of assault with intent to injure and one of male assaults female. Judge Jan Kelly said two of the charges were representative.

From May 2011 to June 2012 Kakahe regularly beat the woman, leaving her with bruises, black eyes and a sore head from being thrown to the floor, she said. The woman had been too scared to make a complaint, but after the last aggressive attack she rang police while Kakahe was sleeping. Even as he was being led away, Kakahe kept shouting abuse at the woman, she said.

Defence lawyer Rennie Gould said Kakahe was a long-term alcoholic and drug user who wanted and clearly needed long-term residential alcohol and drug rehabilitation. He needed to get clean just to stay alive, as well as to stop offending, she said. Judge Kelly said Kakahe had been physically abused as a child and the assaults had left him partially deaf. A drug and alcohol report showed he used alcohol to get by and did not feel safe when he was sober.

However, she said Kakahe had 84 previous convictions including eight previous convictions for assault, and there were no mitigating factors in his favour.

Also being sentenced in court yesterday:

A bottle attack on his former girlfriend's partner saw Stephen Adam Irving, 31, of Takaka, sentenced to 10 months in prison.

The police summary of facts says Irving smashed the bottle on the back of the man's head after running to attack him on Elzy St in Blenheim on the morning of December 31, 2011.

The man fought back and Irving also punched him and poked him in the eye during the fight, the summary says.

The attack left the victim with a cut to the head which required four staples and a bleeding eye, but Irving told police it did not matter that he had hit the man with the bottle as he had a thick skull, the summary says.

Phillippe Frank Jean Cochet, a 42-year-old vineyard worker of Blenheim, was sentenced after admitting a charge of indecent assault and behaving threateningly.

He was sentenced to 18 months' intensive supervision for alcohol rehabilitation including residential treatment and 200 hours' community work.

Judge Kelly said on March 18 Cochet trapped a woman behind a counter at a Blenheim restaurant where she was working, rubbed himself against her and groped her when she refused to give him $60 he said the owner owed him in unpaid wages.

The threatening behaviour charge came after an incident at 2am on February 2 when a drunk, aggressive Cochet was asked to leave while drinking with people at the backpackers he was staying at, she said.

He returned soon after with a broom handle shouting "I will kill you all", she said.

An assessment showed Cochet was an alcoholic from an early age, while he had 11 previous convictions including for assaulting a female and assaulting police, she said.

Nga Hau E Wha Maru, 18, of Blenheim, admitted robbing a man of $80 cash and was sentenced to four months' community detention and 200 hours' community work.

Judge Kelly also imposed a special release condition for six months after his sentence to undergo drug and alcohol and other counselling.

Maru was on bail from other charges when he violently robbed the man on July 4.

In January Maru was sentenced to five months' home detention and 150 hours' community work on a raft of charges including assault, theft, possession of explosives and selling cannabis, Judge Kelly said.

Maru's latest sentence would be in addition to that sentence, she said.

The Marlborough Express