Jailed for ‘extremely violent’ assault

A man who viciously attacked his partner for 15 minutes is "no stranger to violence in a domestic relationship", a court has heard.

Daniel Ross Murch, 30, was jailed for more than three years when he appeared in the Invercargill District Court last week, after pleading guilty to four charges of injuring with intent to injure, two of threatening to kill, assaulting a female, taking a vehicle, wilful damage and driving charges.

On January 8, 2021, the defendant had an argument with his partner at a Dacre address.

He was intoxicated and began accusing her of cheating on him before snatching her car keys.

Murch threw several punches, then lifted her up by the neck and threw her to the ground.

He then continued punching, kicking and stomping on her in a prolonged attack.

The defendant then picked up a hammer, threatened to kill the victim and then used the weapon to damage her car.

The woman did not have her keys and was "petrified and too scared to leave the address", the court heard.

After about two hours, the victim climbed out the bathroom window and called police from a neighbour's house.

The defendant took her vehicle and drove off looking for her.

Police located him in Invercargill with a breath-alcohol level of 711mcg.

Judge Duncan Harvey said the assault was "extremely violent".

"This was sustained violence that only by good luck did not result in serious injury," the judge said.

The court heard Murch was subject to a protection order in relation to another victim, but was yet to complete the mandatory Stopping Violence programme.

He was assessed as being at medium risk of reoffending in a similar way.

"You are no stranger to violence in a domestic relationship," the judge said.

Judge Harvey sentenced Murch to three years and one month of imprisonment and made a protection order in favour of the victim.