One of two brothers who assaulted a Hastings student in front of about 40 young people at a city park was told today that his actions were "not television or a PlayStation game" but a real-life incident that had seriously affected his victim.
Judge Bridget MacIntosh sentenced the 14-year-old to 100 hours of community work, placed him under supervision for six months, and ordered that he undergo an anger-management course.
His 16-year-old brother, who also appeared in court today, will be sentenced on August 21.
The assault of the 16 year-old student on March 30 this year, which was videotaped and posted on the YouTube website was also posted on a second popular internet site, Hastings Youth Court was told.
Judge MacIntosh described the assault as a stupid situation which had got completely out of control and said modern technology - in this case the internet - had been effectively used as a weapon to further humiliate the victim and to glorify the attack.
She said the assault had been aggravated by the large number of young people who had gathered to watch the pre-arranged fight and that it had been deliberately videotaped and filmed by cellphones.
Judge MacIntosh described the situation as "pack mentality" in which onlookers got "some sort of pleasure and kick" out of seeing the victim being attacked and humiliated.
She said it was an indictment on those present that not one person stepped in and tried to stop the fight.
A pre-sentence report indicated that the defendant, whose older brother invited the victim to the pre-arranged fight and initiated the assault, had apologised to the student about half an hour after the assault.
Defence lawyer Don Kennedy said the assault had been sensationalised and its seriousness magnified by what he called "media hype".
After the older brother had knocked the victim to the ground, the younger brother had "somewhat misguidedly" accepted the victim's invitation to hit him as well.
Because the fight had been pre-arranged by the older brother, there had been an element of consent by the victim who had gone knowing he would be assaulted but hoping he could talk his way out of it.
Mr Kennedy claimed the origin of the assault was an incident last year when the younger brother had shone a laser in the eyes of another student at their school. The victim of the assault had taken exception and struck the younger brother.
When the older brother returned to the family home late last year, he had decided the matter "might not end there".
He had instigated the challenge to a fight that ended in the assault in the park.
A third youth, Jerrey Putaranui, 18, of Flaxmere, Hastings, was sentenced to 100 hours' community work on July 26 for his part in the assault.