Cromwell man out of jail after appeal
A man jailed after his friend died when he fell from a quad bike has had his prison sentence quashed by the Court of Appeal.
Cody Ethan Mitchell, 23, was freed from the Otago Corrections Facility on Thursday and will serve the remaining four months of his sentence on home detention.
He was serving a 15-month prison sentence after his friend, Andrew Paul Grubb, 20, died as a result of falling from a quad bike Mitchell was driving.
Mitchell admitted careless driving under the influence of alcohol causing death after the September 11 incident, in Cromwell.
The Court of Appeal hearing was held on May 31 and the decision issued on Thursday.
It was the second appeal filed by Mitchell after an appeal to the High Court was denied in April.
Mitchell’s mother Linda Mitchell said the decision was unbelievable.
She had spoken to Cody by phone and said he was ‘‘emotionally drained’’ but would be ‘‘over the moon’’ to be out of prison. ‘‘He wasn’t enjoying being in there.’’
Cody Mitchell’s Aucklandbased lawyer Nick Chisnall said it had been a ‘‘pretty difficult road’’.
The Court of Appeal decision says the focus of the appeal was put on Mitchell being given a jail sentence instead of home detention.
Ross Hanson, of Dunedin, was the winner of the prize for the most unusual vehicle at the 37th annual Brass Monkey Motorcycle Rally in Oturehua at the weekend. His jetski bike was made from a 225cc Yamaha trike and an old jetski. It features a pretend jet engine made from a chimney flu, teapots, a Nitros bottle and flashing lights. The rally is hosted by the Otago Motorcycle Club in a paddock near the Idaburn Dam, Central Otago.