Stabbing at house known for noise

BLAIR ENSOR AND MYLES HUME
Last updated 05:00 01/08/2014
Stabbing in Tuam St
John Kirk-Anderson/Fairfax NZ

INVESTIGATION ONGOING: Police have cordoned off a section of Tuam St in Christchurch after an alleged stabbing last night.

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A rundown rental home where a man was stabbed has attracted a string of noise complaints and concerns from neighbours about drunken behaviour.

One neighbour said that toddlers were left unattended and they heard screaming late at night as the children's parents drank alcohol and listened to loud music at the property in central Christchurch.

Neighbours feared one of the young children had strayed on to the road and been hit by a car when they woke to find police tape surrounding the home on Tuam St yesterday.

They were relieved to learn detectives were investigating a violent incident where a man was allegedly stabbed by a woman after an argument about 7.30pm the previous day.

The victim was driven to Christchurch Hospital by a friend and required surgery for a 2.5-centimetre stab wound to his abdomen, police said.

A Canterbury District Health Board spokeswoman said he was in a comfortable condition in the general ward. He remained in hospital last night.

A woman was arrested in connection with the incident.

Residents in the area said the property was notorious for late-night parties and drunken disorder despite it being home to as many as five young children.

Christchurch City Council confirmed the property had been the subject of 19 noise complaints in the past year.

On each occasion the noise was not deemed excessive, said the council's inspections and enforcement unit manager, Anne Columbus.

Because of the history of complaints, an environmental health officer visited the property in May and spoke to the occupants about the noise.

Landlord Murray Hill said he was unaware of issues at the property until yesterday.

A resident, who would not be named, said they were fed up with the parties, foul language and disorder.

"We've been trying to get them out but they [officials] keep saying there's nothing they can do," the resident said. "I just can't cope any more."

Another resident said they feared for the safety of the children who were allowed to play out near the busy road. They could not understand why authorities had not intervened.

Child, Youth and Family Christchurch regional director Chris Harvey said he would not comment because the matter was before the courts.

"If people have concerns about children in their neighbourhood, we urge them to make those concerns known to the appropriate authorities," he said.

Sonja Russell, 24, appeared in the Christchurch District Court yesterday charged with intentionally causing grievous bodily harm to the man. She was remanded in custody without plea for an appearance by video-link from prison on August 21.

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- The Press

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