Man jailed for injuring boy

18:58, May 10 2014
Matthew John Krouse
Matthew John Krouse

A Timaru man who intentionally wounded a young boy after driving him to Holme Station Bridge has been sentenced to four years and one month imprisonment.

Matthew John Krouse, 27, went on trial in the High Court in Timaru last year on three charges, attempted murder, injuring with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.

He was found not guilty of attempted murder, but guilty of the other two charges.

The court heard that on November 15, 2012 the victim left school.

Krouse drove past him and pulled over. The pair were known to each other.

The victim got into the car and Krouse drove him to Holme Station Bridge, 17 kilometres away. They walked into an area of dense bush.

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There he assaulted the boy, creating a four centimetre hole inside his mouth down to the jawbone. The victim ended up on the ground and Krouse put the heel of his shoe on the boy's neck.

The boy struggled and Krouse pushed down harder until the boy lost consciousness. Krouse told police he thought he had killed the boy, but then felt a pulse and could hear gurgling as the boy tried to breathe through the blood in his mouth.

Krouse covered the boy with a log before driving back to his home. The boy regained consciousness and was taken to hospital by a member of public.

In a victim impact statement, read by Justice Christian Whata yesterday, the young boy said he was angry and confused about what had happened to him.

He could not understand why no-one had apologised to him and was "horrified" by people who looked like Krouse. The boy has recovered from his injuries.

Justice Whata acknowledged that although Krouse had suffered a "considerable history of neglect and abuse" until the age of 11, he had not offended until the Holme Station Bridge incident.

"It's to your credit and credit [of caregivers] you have no other prior offending."

He also noted Krouse had not "indulged" in illicit substances or alcohol and had gained NCEA levels one and two, despite his troubles.

Justice Whata said it was possible, given a mental health analysis, that Krouse was not aware of what he was doing during the offending.

He sentenced him to four years and one month imprisonment on each of the charges, to be served concurrently. Krouse has already served about 18 months.

The Timaru Herald