Driver accused of attacking police dog

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Photo / APN
Photo / APN

A Welcome Bay man accused of attacking a police dog after an alleged drunken high-speed chase has appeared in court.

Kingi Stanley Tokona, 28, faced one charge each of reckless driving, driving while disqualified and driving with an excess breath alcohol level, resisting police and intentionally injuring a police dog when he appeared in the Tauranga District Court.

Court documents show the police pursuit began at 1.15am on Friday when a police dog handler on his way to a job saw Tokona allegedly go through two red lights on Welcome Bay Rd. Tokona allegedly drove off, reaching speeds of about 100km/h on Maungatapu Rd.

The pursuit ended when Tokona stopped at Taipari St and allegedly ran off into a bush. The police dog handler then released his dog, Turk.

When Turk caught up with Tokona, it is alleged the accused began fighting the dog, kicking and punching it. Then, as he grabbed Turk's head, he fell on top of it, crushing it. He held on to the back of Turk's head and smashed it into the ground. The dog handler dragged Tokona off Turk but a struggled ensued both at the scene and in the police car.

Community Magistrate Robyn Paterson said she was prepared to grant Tokona bail because it was Christmas but he would be subject to a 24-hour curfew and other bail conditions, including a ban on drinking alcohol.

Tokona, who is yet to enter pleas to any of the charges, is due back in court on January 14.

- APN

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