Shoppers stunned as man bites checkout operator's finger
A man who attacked a teenage supermarket checkout operator, punching him and biting his finger while horrified shoppers watched on, has been charged with assault.
A bystander in the supermarket at Christchurch's The Palms mall said the young man was repeatedly punched by his attacker while supermarket staff yelled at the man to stop.
She said the incident was upsetting and the scream the young man let out when his finger was bitten was disturbing.
The incident happened between about 9.30am and 10am on Friday.
Mall security eventually pulled the attacker away while he allegedly yelled to the teenager that he was going to come back and kill him.
Security guard Harley Yaxley said the man, who looked about 190cm tall and weighed about 150kg, "basically walked into Countdown and started beating the s**t out of the employee".
Yaxley said the man and the teenager knew each other. The attack was apparently over $30 of car parts, he said.
Police said a man in his 50s had been charged with assault and had been given a court date.
The assault was "not at the serious end", a police spokesman said.
Countdown said the checkout operator was back at work.
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