Capill attacker in fresh scuffle

JOELLE DALLY
Last updated 05:00 21/08/2013

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A former boxer who famously punched child molester Graham Capill outside the Christchurch District Court in 2005 has admitted assaulting two police officers.

Daniel Andrew McNally, 40, says he never intended to hit the female police officer and must have done so while blinded from pepper spray.

McNally was due to appear in court today to defend charges laid over the May incident in Manchester St, but changed his pleas to guilty at an earlier hearing.

He is now on bail awaiting sentencing next month.

McNally already had an extensive criminal history when he attacked Capill in March 2005.

His assault left the former Christian Heritage Party leader bruised and whimpering and only stopped when Capill's lawyer, Jonathan Eaton, leapt into the fray.

McNally had followed Capill after he left court and punched him in the face and chest by the Armagh St bridge before Eaton restrained him.

He told police at the time that Capill "deserved it".

Capill was sentenced later that year to nine years in jail for sexually violating three girls aged between 5 and 11.

McNally, whose criminal history tallies 168 prior offences - 43 while on bail - assaulted two officers who carried out a check of the car he was in on May 25.

A struggle ensued as a result of a conversation, in which the male officer suffered a broken finger and the policewoman was punched in the face, receiving bruising.

McNally was subdued after being pepper sprayed.

In a letter to The Press, McNally said he had only wanted to hurt the male police officer, who he recognised from a past encounter.

He pushed the female police officer "out of the way" after being pepper sprayed and "could of hit her by actent [accident]", he wrote.

McNally also wrote that his house had been burgled while he was in custody and his shower was "still stuffed".

Inspector Derek Erasmus said yesterday the male officer remained on light duties as a result of his injury.

The female officer was on full duties.

Erasmus declined to comment on McNally's version of events ahead of sentencing, other than to say the summary of facts "speak for themselves".

McNally pleaded guilty on July 11 to common assault - which replaced an earlier charge of assault with intent to injure - possession of cannabis, assaulting police and failing to provide details. He will be sentenced on September 19.

Capill, 54, was released on parole in September 2011 with special conditions, including being banned from contact with children unless under approved supervision.

Capill is living in Christchurch and his sentence finishes in June next year.

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- The Press

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