Priest saves bra strangler

A priest has been the saviour for a Hamilton man who choked his former partner with her bra strap.

Abdu Ali Aramiz, 25, originally of Ethiopia, tried to hold back tears as Judge Peter Spiller sentenced him yesterday  to eight months' home detention at the house of Anglican priest Father Michael Blain's Johnsonville home.

Aramiz had earlier admitted two charges of injuring with intent and one of assault after the incidents in February last year.

The three incidents involved Aramiz allegedly punching, biting and slapping the complainant, his ex-partner, in February.

He is accused of turning up at her house uninvited and forcing his way into a room before punching her in the face about 20 times, leaving her right eye badly bruised and swollen.

She said he then grabbed her by the strap of the bra she was wearing and pulled it across the front of her neck.

Aramiz had successfully won a request to spend his time remand time on bail at Father Blain's home, before his counsel, James Gurnick, successfully argued for the home detention sentence.Aramiz was undergoing treatment for his alcohol and drug issues and was well supported by Father Blain.

Judge Peter Spiller gave Aramiz an extra month off his sentence for his remorse which the judge regarded as sincere.

"You owe a huge debt of gratitude to (Father Blain) for what he has done."

Outside court afterwards, Father Blain, who has worked with refugees for the past 15 years, told the Waikato Times Aramiz had changed significantly since leaving Hamilton and had high hopes of him turning his life around.