Back-door getaway for farmer

A farmer alleged to have deliberately knocked a cyclist off his bike ran from court by a back door after being denied name suppression.

Joseph Roberts, 21, appeared in the Taupo District Court yesterday, charged with injuring with intent to cause grievous bodily harm to cyclist Alasdair Slade, who was training for this weekend's Ironman event.

Mr Slade, 49, suffered a broken collarbone and broken hip when he fell from his bike after allegedly being pushed by Roberts in Broadlands Rd, near Taupo, on Monday.

Roberts, of Reporoa, was initially charged with common assault but the charge was upgraded by police when he appeared in court. Roberts was remanded without plea on bail to March 13.

After signing his bail bond, Roberts ran from the rear of the courthouse and jumped into a waiting friend's ute.

Mr Slade said earlier he was "stiff-armed" after he "gave the finger" to a driver who had overtaken a car coming towards him.

Roberts is alleged to have turned his vehicle around and waited for Mr Slade up the road, so he could push him off the bike.

Taranaki Daily News