Homeless man pelted in driveway

JONO GALUSZKA
Last updated 12:24 22/01/2014

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When a homeless man approached a Palmerston North 22-year-old while he drank in his shed, he was looking for cigarette butts.

But instead of leaving with a nicotine fix, he got a gunshot wound to his eye.

The man was wandering the streets of Palmerston North on December 18, looking for the butts when he walked up a driveway.

Benny Jeffrey Walter Barr, 22, was sitting in his shed drinking with a friend at 1am and saw the man.

When he asked Barr for cigarettes, Barr pulled out an air gun and started firing rounds from about 10 metres away.

The small plastic pellets showered the man's face and body, with one pellet going behind his eyelid and hurting his eye.

The man ran, but Barr and his friend chased him.

When questioned by police, Barr said he was scared and wanted to chase the man away.

In Palmerston North District Court yesterday, Barr pleaded guilty to assault with a gun.

Judge Gregory Ross said a pre-sentence report would be needed before the right punishment could be given to Barr.

He convicted Barr and remanded him until next month for sentencing.

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- Manawatu Standard

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