Man denied discharge on assault complaint

A Queenstown man who spat in his ex-partner’s face and told her he would make her life "hell" has been denied a discharge without conviction.

Nathan Lawrence Hedley Bayle (29) had previously admitted to assaulting his ex-partner by spitting at her, and a charge of intent to frighten after returning to her home following his arrest for the assault.

Bayle appeared before Judge Mark Callaghan for sentencing on Thursday, and applied for a discharge without conviction.

His lawyer, Joseph Mooney, said a conviction would mean Bayle could be deported.

Bayle is in New Zealand from England on an Essential Skills Work Visa, valid until December.

Judge Callaghan said about 4.30pm February 6 Bayle went to his ex-partner’s home to talk to her about who she had gone out with the night before.

The victim came outside to speak to Bayle while he remained in his car.

Bayle became agitated and spat at the woman, hitting her in the face. Bayle  then drove away, and was later arrested for the assault. He was placed on bail, with a condition that he could not go within 50 metres of the woman’s home.

At 9.40pm Bayle called the victim, who did not answer. He then sent her a Facebook message saying the woman had a "long nose" and "haha gonna make your life hell".

He then drove to her home. When he was spotted outside, he ran off, and was arrested nearby.

Mooney said Bayle had expressed remorse for the incident and had attended two counselling sessions.

Referring to the victim impact statement, Judge Callaghan said the woman felt "threatened and scared" following the incident.

Police opposed the application for a discharge without conviction, he said.

They believed it was the court’s "duty not to hide convictions from immigration authorities".

Judge Callaghan declined the application.

"Spitting is, in my view, a serious method of assault."

Bayle was convicted on both charges. He was ordered to pay $500 to the victim and fined $250 plus court costs.

- Daisy Hudson

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