The Hastings Mail - - FRONT PAGE -

Twenty-year-old mur­derer John­nie Puna has been sen­tenced to life im­pris­on­ment with a non-pa­role pe­riod of 14 years. Puna was 19 when he mur­dered Mark Beale at Hau­moana, Hawke’s Bay, on Fe­bru­ary 6 last year. He was sen­tenced in the High Court at Napier on Thurs­day, fol­low­ing a guilty ver­dict at the end of a week-long jury trial in Novem­ber. Beale, 45, was found crit­i­cally in­jured near the Tuk­i­tuki River mouth. He was taken to Hawke’s Bay Hos­pi­tal, but later died of his in­juries. The Crown said Puna be­came an­gry af­ter Beale ac­ci­den­tally knocked him over, and killed Beale with a se­ries of punches and kicks to his head over a pe­riod of 40 to 60 min­utes.

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