'Bully' jailed for violent attack in bar

DEENA COSTER
Last updated 08:18 03/04/2014

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A man who stomped his unconscious victim in the head has been jailed for the attack.

Luke Morris Dean, 19, appeared in the Hawera District Court yesterday for sentencing on a charge of injuring with intent to injure. He pleaded guilty to the offending at an earlier court appearance.

The charge arose from an incident at Barries Restaurant and Sports Bar in Hawera on November 23.

Dean, who had been drinking at the establishment, approached the male victim who was standing at the bar.

The defendant pushed and punched the victim in the face, causing him to fall. Dean punched the victim five more times in the head causing him to lose consciousness. He then stomped on the victim's head.

The victim suffered an injury to his eye and bruising to his lips and face. He also suffered mild concussion.

Lawyer Natalie Bradley said her client's age, employment and early guilty plea were factors which needed to be taken into account.

She sought a sentence of home detention for her client, coupled with community work and supervision.

However, Judge Allan Roberts dismissed this as an option and said a jail sentence would be imposed instead.

He said Dean's previous conviction in October last year was relevant as it also involved serious violence.

In that instance, Dean was sentenced to 275 hours of community work and ordered to pay reparation after he rendered a man unconscious and hitting him with a metal chair.

"You are simply a drunk and a bully," Judge Roberts said.

The "gratuitous violence" had also left the victim vulnerable.

"He felt humiliated as a consequence of your attack," the judge said.

Dean was sentenced to one year and nine months imprisonment with special release conditions imposed for him to attend alcohol and drug and anger management counselling.

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