'Vigilantes' sentenced for intimidating youth

Two men "old enough to know better" have been sentenced for meting out "vigilante justice" in an incident in Pareora.

Truck driver Brian John Riddell, 50, was sentenced to two months' community detention and ordered to pay $250 reparation for intimidation and intentional damage.

Engineer Michael Arthur Smith, 45, was sentenced to 120 hours' community work and to pay $250 reparation for possessing a weapon (metal bar), intentional damage and intimidation.

On Wednesday, March 5, at 11.20pm, the two Pareora men went to an address in the town to talk to a youth they believed had made derogatory comments about a family member. When they arrived, they yelled for him to come out of the house.

The mother of the victim told the men to go away or she would call the police.

They yelled that the victim should stay away from the family member or they would "break his legs". Smith banged on the door with a metal bar. The men then left and the victim's car was found to have its rear window and the tail lights smashed.

Judge Jane Farish hoped both men had realised the impact their actions had had, following a restorative justice conference with the victim.

The Timaru Herald