Throat slashing attempted murder charge

BILL MOORE
Last updated 09:48 15/10/2012

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The arrest of a man accused of a throat slashing in Nelson is a relief to the community, police say.

A man is to appear in the Nelson District Court this afternoon facing an attempted murder charge following a throat slashing in Nelson on Friday night.

Detective Sergeant Mark Kaveney of the Nelson CIB said he was ''very relieved for the wider community'' that the alleged attacker, a 39-year-old North Islander, was ''off the streets''.

''It was a very disturbing incident.''

Police had been searching for an attacker since soon after 5pm on Friday night when a 51-year-old Nelson man staggered into the Washington Rd dairy seeking help.

He had suffered a severe throat wound which Kaveney said was caused by ''a sharp-bladed instrument'', a number of which had been retrieved from the victim's house across the road from the dairy.

He said ''very good policing'' by a young constable on patrol in Picton had led to the arrest.

There had been a report of a man acting strangely. Although the man had changed his appearance from that in the photographs police had circulated, the constable had been able to identify and arrest him without incident.

''We believe he was going to try to make his way across [Cook] strait on one of the ferries.''

The victim was discharged from Nelson Hospital yesterday afternoon.

The hospital would not provide any details of his injury or treatment, but on Saturday St John Ambulance team leader Jon Leach said he had suffered a ''relatively deep laceration across the throat'' that appeared to have missed the major arteries, ''but his airway was probably exposed''.

A Washington Valley resident said on Saturday that the victim's dilapidated house was a drinking den that had caused problems for the community over an extended time, and that police had often visited it.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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