A Northland couple found guilty of being involved with another person in a drive-by shooting between rival gangs have gone to jail.

Clarissa Yates, 31, and Kyle O'Callaghan, 24, were found guilty by a jury in the High Court at Whangarei last month of one charge of wounding with reckless disregard. The charge carries a maximum penalty of seven years in jail.

Both were charged with another person- a gang member- who pleaded guilty to the same charge and also appeared for sentencing but he has been granted interim name suppression.

Yates and O'Callaghan were with that man, a member of the Tribesmen gang, when the shots were fired in the early hours of February 3, 2016, on Archibald St in Kaitaia.


The gang member drove into Archibald St, slammed on the brakes, yelled out a statement, and opened fire with an AK-47 firearm. Four shots were fired and some ricocheted off the ground and hit a person on the leg.

Yates and O'Callaghan did not fire the shots but the jury found them guilty on the basis they were parties to the offending.

Justice Graham Lang said O'Callaghan, an associate of the Tribesmen gang, was assaulted when he ended up with Black Power members on the evening of February 12, 2016.

A standoff occurred between two people, one armed with a tomahawk, and O'Callaghan who had a baseball bat to defend himself.

Justice Lang said O'Callaghan told Yates to call the person, who arrived and fired the shots.

O'Callaghan's lawyer Doug Blaikie said his client was confronted by two people and his kneejerk reaction was to call for help.

He said there was no evidence O'Callaghan knew the man who came to protect him had firearms.

The judge said Yates played a significant role in what transpired by calling the person to the scene.

Two witnesses saw her being on the phone and heard her saying: "Get down, he's got a gun".

She was sentenced to three years and four months jail. O'Callaghan was jailed for two years and he'll serve the sentence without parole.

The other person who has interim name suppression was sentenced to four years and one month jail.