Rich-lister's son apologises for punching officer

Nikolas Delegat. Photo / Otago Daily Times
Nikolas Delegat. Photo / Otago Daily Times

The rich-lister's son who punched a female police officer unconscious has today apologised for his "bad decision in the heat of the moment".

Nikolas James Posa Delegat, 19, was a University of Otago student when he attacked and knocked unconscious Constable Alana Kane and assaulted a Campus Watch staff member during a drunken scuffle outside Starters Bar, in Frederick St, in March last year.

Yesterday, Delegat was sentenced to 300 hours community work for the police assault, 100 hours for assaulting a campus watch officer, 60 hours for wilful damage, and 60 hours for resisting arrest. He has also been ordered to pay $5000 emotional harm reparation to the police officer he punched.

Kane is still being helped by colleagues on her road back to work, 18 months after the attack.

In a statement released to the Herald on behalf of the Delegat family, Nikolas Delegat apologised for the harm he has caused.

"Nikolas takes full responsibility for his actions that night," it says.

"He attended a restorative justice conference where he expressed his remorse, and he again apologises to the police officer, university security guard and all others concerned.

"Nikolas was in the first two months of his university study away from home in Dunedin.

"He made a bad decision in the heat of the moment which caused considerable harm to those affected, which he regrets.

"He also apologises to his family and those around him for the trouble he has caused them."

Earlier today, Acting Area Commander Otago Coastal Inspector Kelvin Lloyd released a statement which said Kane would not be making any comment on the case.

"Any assault on our staff is a concern and we continue to offer Constable Kane the necessary help and support she needs in her recovery," Lloyd said.

"While operational policing always carries an element of risk, our staff do not go to work expecting to be assaulted.

"Constable Kane is very grateful for the support and concern that members of the public have expressed to her."

Kane's focus is now on returning to work and she asks for privacy at this time, Lloyd said.

Delegat is the son of Jakov "Jim" Delegat and wife Kate. The National Business Review listed Jim Delegat and sister Rosemari's wealth at $350 million in last year's Rich List.

Delegat fought to keep his name from the public, beginning with an application filed in the Auckland District Court last May.

That bid was quashed by the Court of Appeal in November.

Delegat was initially charged with the aggravated assault of Kane, assaulting a campus watch officer, resisting police and intentionally damaging a window.

As a result of the assault on her, Kane needed hospital treatment for a black eye and serious swelling to her face.

That charge was amended to assaulting a police officer with intent to obstruct her in the execution of her duty earlier this year.

He admitted to resisting arrest last year, but did not plead guilty to the other charges until June this year.

He yesterday applied for a discharge without conviction.

In sentencing the 19-year-old, Judge Kevin Phillips said he would not grant a discharge without conviction as Delegat assaulted two people without "any real degree of warning or provocation".

He punched Kane with such force as to render her unconscious and then delivered three further blows.

Her injuries resulted in concussion and 15 hours of hospital treatment.

She still suffered from ongoing headaches, Judge Phillips said.

A summary of facts said Delegat punched a hole in a window after he became very angry about a remark made by a friend about his girlfriend.

He then punched a Campus Watch officer who intervened during a heated argument between Delegat and his girlfriend and violently resisted police, punching Kane in the face as she was trying to arrest him.

- NZ Herald

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter


© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production apcf04 at 29 Oct 2016 07:04:19 Processing Time: 609ms