Man feared for his life'

By news@wanganuichronicle.co.nz, Court Reporter


A man feared for his life as he was pursued during a home invasion, Whanganui District Court has heard.

The incident occurred in 2011 and involved two brothers.

For his role in the home invasion, 27-year-old Brett de Jong-King was to be tried before a jury on charges of aggravated burglary and intentional damage.

But yesterday, before a jury was empanelled, he admitted intentional damage and the other charge was withdrawn.

Court documents show that on November 16, 2011, de Jong-King's younger brother, Rick de Jong, contacted him after arguing with the complainant and his boarder. The dispute was over alleged theft.

De Jong-King collected his brother from his Keith St home and drove him to the complainant's Springvale house.

The complainant heard someone screaming outside his house, looked out a window and saw both men on the drive.

Rick de Jong was carrying a baseball bat and screamed for the complainant to come out of the house. He then kicked down the front door, went through the home yelling all the time for the complainant.

De Jong-King, who was represented yesterday by lawyer Peter Brosnahan, stayed outside while his brother walked through the house looking for the victim.

His brother used the bat to punch a hole in the wall and dent a free-standing oven.

The complainant and his boarder fled through a sliding door at the back. Rick de Jong ran towards them, smashing his baseball bat through the door.

Fearing for his life, the complainant ran to a neighbour's where he phoned the police.

The cost of damage to his home amounted to $5476.04

On June 27, 2012, Rick de Jong admitted charges of aggravated burglary and intentional damage.

He was sentenced to two years' imprisonment and ordered to pay $750, as reparation to cover insurance excess costs.

Crown prosecutor Harry Mallalieu said that, given de Jong-King played a lesser role in the crime, community work would be an appropriate sentence.

A charge of aggravated burglary against de Jong-King was dropped, because the Crown did not have the evidence to prove it.

On the charge of intentional damage, de Jong-King was convicted and sentenced by Judge David Cameron to 150 hours' community work.

- Wanganui Chronicle

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