Hike sentence

Supervision sentence for resisting police during first lockdown

A man now residing in Gerymouth has been sentenced to surveillance by Timaru District Court over an incident that took place in Timaru during the first nationwide lockdown in 2020.

JOHN BISSET/Stuff

A man now residing in Gerymouth has been sentenced to surveillance by Timaru District Court over an incident that took place in Timaru during the first nationwide lockdown in 2020.

A former Timaru man with a history of “particularly violent and destructive offenses against the police” was sentenced to supervision in Timaru District Court on Thursday.

Wayne Ryan, a dairy farmer, now from Runanga, had been convicted after a trial in Timaru on a charge of resisting police and appeared in Timaru District Court via an audiovisual link from Greymouth District Court.

His lawyer, Kelly Beazley, originally submitted a conviction and the release was appropriate as Ryan had stayed out of trouble since that offense at Timaru on April 11, 2020 – when New Zealand was in the first of its Alert Level 4 lockdowns Covid-19.

“For a few months after this event he has resided in Greymouth and has been employed full time since and no further convictions,” Beazley said, adding that Ryan had not had alcohol since the incident and that “the alcohol was a factor.

READ MORE:
* A Timaru man exceeds the limit five times when he is caught driving drunk for the fourth time
* Man admits threatening to kill pupils and teachers at South Canterbury school
* Man charged with trail of destruction in Timaru appears in court

When Beazley submitted that his client “has a history”, Judge Dominic Dravitzki cut him off, saying “he has a particular history of behavior towards the police” and invited re-examination of the defense submission.

“The only thing I could suggest would be community service,” Beazley said.

Judge Dravitzki said Ryan was convicted in a defended hearing before him, in which he faced other significant charges of police violence of which he was acquitted.

However, Judge Dravitzki said he took into account “the whole situation was triggered and aggravated by your initial refusal to cooperate and then to actively resist the police as they undertook their duties and investigated”.

Judge Dravizki said Ryan essentially admitted to the incident during the trial and resisted police from the outset, from which point the situation escalated significantly.

“You have a troubled history of violent, but particularly violent and destructive offenses against the police.”

Judge Dravitzki accepted this, “to a certain extent this is now old”, but he entered a conviction for assaulting the police and obstructing the police (separate incidents) in 2012, twice assaulted the police in 2006 and resisted the police in 2006 and 2005.

“I also see general violent offenses and a conviction for assault with intent to injure.

“In this context, I do not accept the initial arguments that it is appropriate to convict and discharge the remaining count.”

Judge Dravizki said he had considered imposing a heavy sentence of community service “given the historical facts and your initial resistance which sparked what has become a much more explosive situation”.

“However, I have heard the positive aspects of your life since you have moved away from Timaru, living outside of Greymouth and have had no problems with the police since these issues and have taken steps to refrain from to drink alcohol.”

Ryan was sentenced to 60 hours of community service plus six months of supervision and was ordered to attend assessment and treatment as directed by his probation officer to address any identified issues regarding drug use and alcohol and/or violence.