Assault victim helps attacker avoid jail

A Hauraki man strangled his partner after he pushed her on to the ground during a heated argument last year.

But it was the victim's words that helped David Paul Odey avoid prison when he was sentenced in the Hamilton District Court yesterday for injuring with intent to injure. He had earlier been found guilty by a jury.

Odey, 42, arrived at his Turua home drunk on December 26 and started arguing with the victim.

They moved to the garage where Odey "lost it".

He pushed her with both hands and she fell to the ground. He then grabbed her throat, but the victim fought back scratching his face.

Odey continued to struggle with the victim, strangling her for an "extended" time - to the point where she began to lose consciousness.

She managed to call out for help and police arrived.

Odey's counsel Matthew Bates said the couple had reunited, and had been living together without any problem since he was bailed back to their home in February.

Since then he had also found a full-time job and if jailed would lose it.

The victim spoke to Judge Peter Spiller, urging him not to send Odey to prison.

She said Odey had formed a strong bond with his son, along with her two children.

"Since the incident and we have been together things have been on the up: we have both strived. I have gone further forward and got employment as well. [Odey] has self-referred to anger management and I have also started anger management myself."

The pair were receiving relationship counselling and she had no fears about Odey serving a sentence at their home.

Judge Spiller said he had to take into account Odey's reintegration back into the community and imposed a sentence of 18 months supervision and 150 hours' community work.

Waikato Times