Drunk defendant 'lost total control' during crime spree

As far as crimes sprees go, it was unusual.

Job Tara Henare (39) was up early on August 10 and popped into Balclutha's Clyde St Subway at 6.30am.

He was witnessed by the lone staff member stumbling around the premises.

Henare wanted a steak sandwich. Then he did not.

The employee, who had already made the sub when the defendant decided he was not hungry, asked for payment anyway.

The Dunedin District Court yesterday heard Henare - who had consumed large quantities of alcohol and prescription medication that morning - was unresponsive.

When asked again he emptied the contents of his wallet on to the counter.

After being repeatedly asked to leave, Henare told the victim if he saw her outside work he would hurt or kill her.

Next, the man wandered a few metres down the road to the Living Corporation real-estate agency.

He broke into a shed at the back of the property and uplifted a pick-axe, which he used to try to force open a door. When that was unsuccessful, Henare took a more direct approach.

He smashed a window of a large sliding door and made his way inside.

Despite turning down the steak sub previously, Henare munched his way through confectionery at the business. Then he stacked various items - including cutlery, according to a police summary - outside.

He also took a diary and fish tank home.

But the spree was not quite over.

At 9.30am, Henare found the doors to the South Otago Hotel locked so tried to enter through an unlocked window.

Police found him hanging from the window with his foot wedged in the gap.

With a final calamitous flourish, Henare smashed the window while trying to free himself.

The defendant explained he had abstained from alcohol and on that day ''lost total control'' while celebrating the resolution of a significant issue from his past.

He pleaded guilty to burglary, threatening to injure and unlawfully being in a building.

Judge Michael Crosbie said Henare had been to jail for this last burglary. However, he was impressed the defendant had been to restorative justice with Living Corporation staff and was committed to paying reparation.

Henare was sentenced to 10 months' home detention and ordered to pay $8207 reparation.

 

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