Man can't recall choking police dog

BELINDA FEEK
Last updated 14:25 30/05/2014

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A Hamilton man was so drunk he can't remember wrestling and then choking a police dog as its handler struggled to arrest him.

Ted Riini also doesn't remember walking the streets and randomly banging - then smashing - people's windows while asking for his girlfriend on the night of January 4.

Appearing in the Hamilton District Court this week, Riini, through his lawyer, Len Caley, admitted multiple charges. They included four of intentional damage, assaulting a female, injuring with intent, resisting police and injuring a police dog during three separate incidents spanning six months up to January.

The most serious incident occurred when a drunken Riini was seen by a motorist running on the footpath of Peachgrove Rd before tripping and falling about 10pm on January 4.

Concerned, the motorist pulled over, checking he was all right before Riini forced his way in the car. The driver drove him around, turning down various streets before ending up at the Mobil service station at the intersection of Clyde and Galloway streets.

There, Riini became angry as the driver refused to take him any further and punched him twice in the nose before running off down Peachgrove Rd.

Thirty minutes later, Riini banged on the window of a Pinfold Ave house so hard it smashed. He did the same thing again at a Te Aroha St house, frightening the residents. He was eventually spotted by a police dog handler and asked to stop before the police dog was released.

Riini managed to squeeze the dog close to his chest with his arm across the dog's neck, making it hard to breathe and causing the dog to yelp loudly.

When spoken to Riini had slurred speech and couldn't remember what he had done and had no idea why he was in Hamilton East.

Caley said alcohol was at the root of all of Riini's offending. Since being ordered not to drink it as part of his bail conditions he had been behaving well and living at his mother's house.

Riini also admitted smashing a glass pane of a bus shelter in Te Rapa Rd on July 20 last year and assaulting his partner on September 14.

Riini was convicted on all charges by Judge David Ruth and remanded on further bail for sentencing in July.

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- Waikato Times

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