Man threatened partner

A Hamilton man threatened to hurt his partner after she agreed to be a witness for police in a case against him.

Aaron James Hamiora, 27, yesterday pleaded guilty to assault with a firearm and attempting to pervert the course of justice in the Hamilton District Court.

Hamiora was at his Whatawhata house along with his partner and an associate when he began talking with another person known to them.

However, things escalated and Hamiora threatened the man, pointing the firearm at him.

He put the gun down once an associate of the victim walked into the house.

Hamiora’s partner witnessed the incident and was down on the list of witnesses provided to his defence counsel Thomas Sutcliffe after he pleaded not guilty to the charge. 

Hamiora, who was a gang member, then decided to send his partner several threatening text messages to stop her from giving evidence, which crown prosecutor Sheila Cameron said made her fear for her life.

‘‘One threat was ‘to sort it out Terry’s way’, who she was aware was capable of hurting people.’’

But Mr Sutcliffe said the threats were not that serious as there was no actual violence.

Judge Arthur Tompkins disagreed and said Mr Sutcliffe had attempted to downplay the seriousness of the threats ‘‘but in my view this was a premeditated attempt ... to dissuade the complainant from giving evidence’’.

On the charge of assault with a firearm, Hamiora was sentenced to 13 months’ prison. However, he added a further 18 months’ on the second charge.

As Hamiora was led out of the dock, he mouthed to Mr Sutcliffe that he wanted to appeal.

Waikato Times