Manslaughter verdict in death of Auckland homeless man

By Amelia Wade

Darrell Dunn appears at the Auckland High Court on the charge of manslaughter . 05 September 2016 NZ Herald photograph by Michael Craig
Darrell Dunn appears at the Auckland High Court on the charge of manslaughter . 05 September 2016 NZ Herald photograph by Michael Craig

An Auckland man who had a drunken brawl with a homeless man in a park, leaving him unconscious, has been found guilty of manslaughter.

After a week-long trial at the High Court at Auckland and seven hours of deliberations, a jury found Darrell Edward James Dunn, 48, guilty of the manslaughter of Teina Wharawhara, 42.

The Crown alleged Dunn and Wharawhara were drinking heavily in Outhwaite Park, Grafton, on November 10 last year when they began arguing over the dead man's phone.

Wharawhara was worried about the battery because they were using it to play music and Dunn told him to "stop moaning", prosecutor Jo Murdoch told the jury during opening statements.

A witness gave evidence that the pair also argued over a vodka bottle.

Murdoch said Dunn whacked Wharawhara, causing him to fall backwards off the park seat, then kicked him around the head.

Dunn and a friend then left Wharawhara on the ground to go to K Rd.

A post mortem found Wharawhara died of blunt force trauma to the head.

Murdoch said the Crown alleges this was as a result of the assault.

But defence lawyer Sam Wimsett said Dunn was acting in self defence because Wharawhara attacked the defendant first and when Dunn left the park, Wharawhara was still alive.

The case wrapped up on Friday afternoon and the jury retired at 1pm to deliberate. They returned at 8pm with the guilty verdict.

Sentencing is set down for next month.

- NZ Herald

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