Offer to pay for dog injuries after violent incident
Jac Rhys Howells, a 24-year-old shearer from Rangiora, also offered to pay for damages to the ute he repeatedly rammed into when an incident of domestic violence took an even more nasty turn in the bed of the Ashley River.
Two women who were walking their dogs by the river intervened in the domestic dispute when Howells’ partner asked for help. He rammed into their ute while the three women were inside.
They were not injured, but a pet dog was injured when he was thrown from the vehicle to the ground.
Judge David Ruth was told during Howells’ sentencing by Christchurch District Court that the restorative justice meeting had been successful. The victims started out wanting “the book” thrown at Howells, but ended up wanting him to get the help he needed.
He made his offer to pay for the damage to the ute and the injuries to the dog.
Justice Ruth noted the reconciliation at the meeting.
“It’s an example of why we have restorative justice as part of our process.”
He decided a prison sentence was not necessary and placed Howells in community custody with an overnight curfew for five months and 12 months supervision when he will have to undergo a Driving Change program, a program Stopping Violence, advice according to the instructions and not to consume. drugs or alcohol.
Howells had now abstained from alcohol for some time, his attorney Kerri Bell told the judge.
Judge Ruth also banned him from driving for a year from last January, followed by a period on an alcohol-screening device and then a non-alcoholic license.
Howells had admitted charges of driving while disqualified and driving while intoxicated – in their aggravated form due to at least two previous convictions – and two charges of assault using a vehicle as a weapon.
The series of attacks on the other ute ended when smoke began pouring from under the hood of Howells’ vehicle and he smashed it into a pile of grass and got stuck.
The court was told Howells was driving while disqualified and with a blood alcohol level of 770mcg of alcohol per liter of breath when the incident happened on November 29 last year.
After the argument with her partner began at the Ashley River near Sefton, she sought help from two women who were walking their dogs. They agreed to drive her home.
The three women got into a Ford Ranger but Howells drove around the bloated torso, intimidating them and smashing a side mirror.
He then got into his own vehicle and drove towards the other vehicle, narrowly missing it. It then looped and drove it into the left side.
When at least one of the women came out, Howells attacked them again but swerved at the last second.
The women entered the vehicle and locked the doors before Howells entered the front of the vehicle.
The women left, followed by Howells. He rammed the rear and side of the vehicle before his vehicle broke down and became stuck.
Police found him near the stuck vehicle and subjected him to a breathalyzer test.
-By David Clarkson
Multimedia Journalist Open Justice