Dog owner to have hearing in assault case

DEENA COSTER
Last updated 05:00 20/06/2014

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Two South Taranaki dog control officers were assaulted when they went to investigate complaints against a wandering dog.

Kieran Lori Jane Te Punga Taylor, 27, appeared in the Hawera District Court on charges of assault and assault with a blunt instrument after an incident at her Rahotu home on May 15.

During her appearance on Wednesday, police prosecutor Sergeant Steve Hickey withdrew a charge of possession of an offensive weapon.

Lawyer Alice Leonard said though Taylor admitted assaulting the officers, she disputed aspects of the police case.

According to the summary of facts, Taylor arrived at her home to find two dog control officers on her property. She become abusive, swearing at them and telling them they could not take her dog.

It is alleged she then pushed, punched and kicked the officers and threw a spade, blade first, at one of the workers who was hit in the face by the handle.

Both men suffered minor injuries.

Leonard said Taylor accepted she had acted inappropriately in the circumstances.

"It was a volatile situation that got out of control."

Judge Geoffrey Ellis asked why the officers were at Taylor's home.

Leonard explained complaints were made about the dog wandering around the neighbourhood. The dog, which was classified as menacing, had since been put down.

Taylor entered guilty pleas to the charges but due to the level of disagreement with the police summary, including the severity of the assault, Ellis said a disputed facts hearing would be required. He remanded Taylor on bail to reappear in the Hawera District Court on August 26 for a hearing date to be set.

Taylor's partner has also been charged in connection with the incident and is due to appear in the Hawera District Court on July 1.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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