Jailed man wants to stay a gang member

A 23-year-old man who held a bird bath over the head of a man while threatening to kill him also rammed a vehicle into a power pole the victim hid behind during the attack.

Kahn Martin Studer-Mark also punched the victim, whom he did not know, on three different occasions during the attack, which happened in Gore on February 2 last year.

Studer-Mark, who had previously admitted aggravated burglary and assault with a weapon, appeared before Judge Jim Large in the Invercargill District Court at a Crown sentencing yesterday.

Judge Large said Studer-Mark was with another man when he drove up the victim’s driveway at speed.

"You were wearing your Mongrel Mob patch and got out of the vehicle and demanded money from him."

The victim was punched about the head by Studer-Mark four times when he asked the men to leave. The other man went into the house and found $50 and a wooden baseball bat.

The victim fell to the ground after Studer-Mark punched him twice. It was then Studer-Mark picked up the top of a birdbath and held it above the victim’s head while he threatened to kill him, Judge Large said.

When the victim tried to run away, Studer-Mark chased him and hit him again, causing the man to fall on his knees on the road.

The man got free again and ran to hide behind a power pole near the property. Studer-Mark and his associate got back in the vehicle and drove at the man, driving into the power pole. The two then drove away.

Judge Large said before reading reports prepared for sentencing, he was of the opinion he would give Studer-Mark only a 10% to 15% discount on his sentence for mitigating factors.

However, the reports showed Studer-Mark had been subjected to abuse, depravation and violence from a very young age.

"That explains why you offend but doesn’t excuse why you offend."

Studer-Mark found his family in the Mongrel Mob, the judge said.

Defence counsel Hugo Young said Studer-Mark saw his gang in a different way to how others saw it.

"The way he sees it, is that softer side to the Mongrel Mob, a side where there are good family values about abstaining from certain drugs and so on and working."

Studer-Mark planned to retain his gang membership after his release from prison but hoped that, now that he had a family himself, he could lead a good family life at the same time, Mr Young said.

Judge Large said Studer-Mark’s future behaviour would determine his child’s upbringing.

"They (his child and future children) will become a product of the environment you create for them."

Studer-Mark was given a 20% discount for guilty plea and 30% for mitigating factors and was sentenced to 19 months’ jail. He was not granted leave to apply for home detention and release conditions were also imposed.




Our journalists are your neighbours

We are the South's eyes and ears in crucial council meetings, at court hearings, on the sidelines of sporting events and on the frontline of breaking news.

As our region faces uncharted waters in the wake of a global pandemic, Otago Daily Times continues to bring you local stories that matter.

We employ local journalists and photographers to tell your stories, as other outlets cut local coverage in favour of stories told out of Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

You can help us continue to bring you local news you can trust by becoming a supporter.

Become a Supporter