Officers stalked by addict

Last updated 09:00 07/03/2014
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New Plymouth District Court

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A methadone addict bristling with knives hid himself in the bushes to await the arrival of police.

In the New Plymouth District Court, beneficiary Aaron Jay South, 34, of Bell Block, yesterday admitted two counts of assaulting police while armed with knives about 9pm on February 2.

South who has been on methadone for 10 years and on medication for depression and psychotic behaviour seldom went out, the police summary says.

The incident kicked off when South lost his temper after seeing how much his tobacco, brought home by his mother, would cost him.

When his concerned mother rang police and took refuge at the neighbour's, South armed himself with knives he hid in his socks, in a backpack and concealed on his body to await the police arrival.

He hid in his "hidey-hole" among the bushes in the driveway.

Two police officers arrived armed with a rifle and a Taser and when they went past the hidden South he put a knife in each hand and stalked them in the dark.

When the two police officers turned to confront him, he was 4 to 5 metres away and coming at them with his hands raised brandishing the knives.

Police fired the Taser and both probes hit him in the chest. But one bounced off the concealed sheaf knife on his body and failed to discharge correctly.

Police aimed the rifle at him and ordered him to the ground when he was arrested.

Their subsequent search uncovered an assortment of nine knives from 10cm to 20cm long.

He told police he wanted them to shoot him because it was not worth living when he ran out of medication and tobacco because he could not control his impulsive behaviour.

The court heard that a psychiatric report found him fit to plead.

South was remanded for sentencing until April 3.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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