Jibes during hearing land man in cells

A belligerent Oamaru man was this week thrown in the court cells after a dispute over his name.

Timothy (Rene) Van Delden (36) refused to answer to the name Van Delden when he was called to appear before Judge Tom Gilbert in the Oamaru District Court on Wednesday.

He claimed his legal name was Timothy Rene and initially refused to enter the dock, stating he would only enter "under duress".

When he finally did, Van Delden was argumentative and repeatedly ignored requests from the judge to be quiet.

He refused to enter a plea
on a charge of intimidating behaviour, saying he believed a guilty and not guilty plea to
be "the same thing".

A not guilty plea was entered on his behalf, and Judge Gilbert found him in contempt of court.

Van Delden appeared surprised when taken into the court cells by security staff and police officers, and could be heard in court loudly shouting obscenities from the cells shortly after.

About three hours later, after cooling off, he was brought back before the court.

However, the spell behind bars had not totally changed Van Delden’s attitude.

Judge Gilbert said he tried to be respectful of others when they were talking to him, and he expected the same courtesy from the defendant.

When invited to apologise, Van Delden said he was "sorry for exercising his rights ...", before being cut off by the judge.

"That will do," the judge said.

On August 27 last year, it is alleged Van Delden intimidated a Waitaki District Council animal control officer by parking outside her home and watching her while she put her son in a car-seat.

He is accused of remaining there for several minutes, making her fearful for her safety.

It is understood there had been previous confrontations because the woman had seized the defendant’s dog.

Counsel Katherine Henry would seek to have the charge dismissed, the court heard.

She said her client was accused of sitting on the highway for four to five minutes, did not get out of his car, and then drove away. 

Van Delden will appear before the court again in March.

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