Assaults on mum bring jail sentence

Family violence is up but the number of people being prosecuted for the crimes is "disturbingly"...
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He was "coming down" from using meth and wanted cigarettes, a man said after attacking his mother and using her bankcard to buy them.

Joel Taylor Sloper, 25, a 501 deportee from Australia, was before the Dunedin District Court on Tuesday convicted of strangulation, two charges of assault in a family relationship, and dishonestly using an eftpos card.

During the afternoon of November 29, Sloper asked his mother if he could use her card to buy cigarettes.

She initially agreed but then changed her mind.

Sloper became angry, followed her into her room, yelled at her and kicked her multiple times in the legs. He also whipped her on the legs with a phone charger cord, and slapped her three times in the face.

He then grabbed her by the neck with both hands, pinned her to the bed and applied pressure for one or two minutes, court documents said.

The woman could not breathe and felt she was going to die.

Leaving her on the bed, Sloper took her bankcard from her wallet and walked to the shops, where he used it to buy $35 of cigarettes.

Around mid-morning the next day, his mother told him she was going to stay at a friend’s house for the night.

Enraged, Sloper yelled at her and spat in her face multiple times. He punched her once in the head and kicked her in the legs.

Judge Michael Turner noted Sloper lived in Australia for 17 years before returning here when deported. While he had no prior New Zealand record, his many convictions in Australia included armed robbery.

Telling Probation about "coming down" from meth, Sloper said he had been addicted for years. He also expressed remorse for the offending.

"Counsel [John Westgate] rightly submits imprisonment is the only option," the judge said.

He sentenced Sloper to 20 months’ jail (with leave to apply for home detention).