A Rotorua farmhand was cruel and cowardly to shoot a terrified man in the backside after friends duped him with salt in a drug deal, a judge says.

Joshua Patrick Homan, 25, was jailed for seven years and six months when he was sentenced in Rotorua High Court.

He had earlier pleaded guilty to assaulting and robbing a man at Paradise Valley on the city's outskirts in October. In court yesterday, Justice Murray Gilbert outlined how Homan, a methamphetamine addict, and four others planned to lure the man to a remote area where they could dupe him into buying the drug before robbing him.

Police investigate the scene on Paradise Valley Rd last October. Photo/File
Police investigate the scene on Paradise Valley Rd last October. Photo/File

The P they offered the man was in fact salt and when the transaction took place one of Homan's co-offenders, armed with a loaded firearm, lent into the visitor's car demanding his "loot" before shooting him in the thigh and hitting him in the head with the weapon.


As the man fled, another in the group yelled "shoot him, shoot him".

Homan, who was hiding in bushes armed with a .303 rifle, fired and hit the man in the
buttocks. As the man rolled into a ditch the group drove off. Judge Gilbert said the bullet from Homan's gun left the victim's body through his groin and that he still suffered considerable pain in his pelvis and walks with a limp.

"Your actions were cowardly, gratuitous, cruel .. . your decision to leave him in this remote location without checking on him was callous and premeditated.

"The consequences could have been lethal," he told Homan.