A knife-wielding man who paraded around in public with his shirt off, challenging people to fight him, has been jailed for nearly two years.

John-Boy Rakete also admitted punching a bouncer outside a Stuart St pub in Dunedin, breaking the man's jaw.

The violent outburst on April 5 saw him plead guilty to a charge of injuring in circumstances where if death had occurred he would have been guilty of manslaughter.

Rakete initially attempted to skip the queue for the inner-city bar and though the bouncer would not let him in, he allowed the defendant to speak to his girlfriend.


He was then told he had to return to the back of the line.

"You didn't like that at all and struck him on the left side of the face," said Judge Kevin Phillips, before Dunedin District Court this afternoon.

The victim was knocked to the ground and was later told he had been lucky his injuries had not been worse.

The attack saw him face "all types of difficulties" for the following three weeks. It had an impact on his university exams and resulted in him missing out on work.

"You're not in a position to make good on any losses," Judge Phillips noted.

Less than two weeks later, Rakete was in trouble again.

A party at his home led to an argument between revellers but he was reluctant to take up the role of peacemaker.

"You took a kitchen knife and threatened people and you were out parading in the street with your top off challenging people to fight and threatening them with the knife," the judge said.

"I don't know what you were on, certainly alcohol . . . it's quite weird behaviour."

The violence continued on May 19 when he told an associate he needed to speak to him.

As the man left the room with Rakete, he punched him to the ground and kicked him in the stomach as he lay there.

The defendant stole the man's tobacco and then offered him a hand to help him up.
But it was not the friendly gesture it appeared to be.

Judge Phillips said Rakete "whacked" the victim in the face again before offering an expletive-laden threat.

Rakete's lawyer Rhona Daysh said her client recognised his offending was "always accompanied by anger and also alcohol".

She said he was motivated to change his ways.

"His father is a patched member of the Mongrel Mob and he lives with him in a gang atmosphere," Ms Daysh

"He's laid that on the table and said that's his history, his whakapapa if you like, and he doesn't want to return to that."

In a report before the court, probation said they were concerned Rakete's offending was escalating in seriousness.

Judge Phillips said the defendant had to do something to break the cycle of violence and prison.

He jailed Rakete for one year 10 months and ordered him to do alcohol, drug and psychological assessments upon his release.

Ms Daysh said her client hoped to attend Moana House - a residential rehabilitation facility - when he got out of prison.