Police believe they know identity
The badly decomposed remains of aman found in a caravan in a Cromwell holiday park were those of missing transient Simon James Garrick. Police were called to the Cromwell Top 10 Holiday Park about 10.30am on Thursday after a woman discovered the body lying on the floor of her caravan, which was in a secured storage compound at the rear of the park with about 100 other caravans. Detective Sergeant Derek Shaw (pictured) said while the person was yet to be formally identified, several items found at the scene indicated the body was that of Mr Garrick, 42, who had been missing for about a year. A scene examination completed at the caravan by police concluded the circumstances did not appear to be suspicious and the matter
was referred to the coroner.
Jail sentence quashed
An Irish builder jailed for refusing to provide a blood specimen under suspicion of drink-driving has won an appeal against sentence. Francis David Fitzgerald, 28, was sentenced to four months and two weeks’ jail when he appeared before Judge Michael Turner in Queenstown District Court last month. Justice David Gendall in the Invercargill High Court quashed the sentence and imposed a sentence of three months’ home detention, commuted to two months and two weeks for time served. Fitzgerald admitted refusing to provide a specimen during the May 9 incident. He was angry with a friend while drinking in Queenstown and left the bar. A manager tried to take his car keys away but was unsuccessful and Fitzgerald drove off. A security guard called police, who spotted the vehicle with no lights on and swerving before stopping when the engine stalled. Fitzgerald stumbled from the car and refused to undergo a breath test, telling police he did not hurt anyone and he was ‘‘a good guy’’. Court documents say the conviction was his third related to drink-driving. Fitzgerald, the director of a house building company, was subject to an immigration review likely to take 18 months after appealing against a deportation order. ‘‘Although I accept that the offending here was serious with significant public safety concerns, it is my view that the district court judge erred in not assessing home detention as a real alternative and the least restrictive outcome available to him in this case,’’ Justice Gendall said. Orders to complete alcohol treatment and counselling and confiscation of a $47,000 Land Rover remained in place.
Three Irish tradies working in Christchurch were remanded on bail when they appeared in court after a late-night bar brawl in Queenstown. Riccarton flatmates Anthony Joseph Twomey, 25, concrete worker, Eoin Declan Egan, 24, concrete worker, and Tony William O’Sullivan, 25, blocklayer, appeared before a registrar in Queenstown District Court. All three were remanded without plea to appear in Queenstown on November 4. Twomey was charged with assault using a pool cue as a weapon, assaulting police and assault; Egan was charged with assault and intentionally damaging a van; and O’Sullivan was charged with assault. Police said the men got into a fight at 1.45am on Sunday in the Buffalo Club when one allegedly tried to smash a pool cue over another but missed, the cue broke and flew into a patron’s face.
A Fernhill builder charged with drug dealing was sentenced to four months’ home detention when he appeared in Queenstown District Court. Tom Adam Parrant, 22, appeared before Judge Turner for sentence for possession of cannabis for sale to persons over 18 on August 3. The court was told a police checkpoint stopped Parrant while driving and noticed a knife in the car, which was searched and 27g of the drug was recovered. Officers also found eight $50 ziplock bags, another 6g of the drug and another large knife in the footwell of the car. Cash was recovered and another 40g of cannabis, scales and a bong were found at his house. Overall, the potential street value of the drug was between $900 and $1000. Judge Turner said the defendant was an active drug dealer although a lower starting point for sentencing was justified. He accepted Parrant used cannabis but dismissed a claim that he was a chronic user and the drug was for personal consumption.
England v. Germany
Britain squared off against Germany in Queenstown when two visitors got into a fight over a woman. Senior constable Chris Blackford, of Queenstown, said a 26-year-old English man and a 23-year-old German man were arrested in The Mall and were both given pre-charge warnings. ‘‘New Zealand had to step in as a mediator between England and Germany.’’
Four Kiwi men were arrested on Saturday for fighting and violence offences following a brawl with bouncers at Bar Up. Two were charged with assault and the third was given a precharge warning for disorderly behaviour.