A samurai sword-wielding man who took his former partner and their child and led police on a high-speed chase has been jailed for 15 months.

Gary Ratima Karangaroa, 29, appeared before Judge Geoff Rea in the Napier District Court yesterday as a result of a methamphetamine-fuelled afternoon in August last year.

He took his former partner and their 5-year-old daughter from a Hastings address after threatening the woman with a samurai sword at about 1.30pm on August 6.

Speeding off with the passenger door open, he ignored the woman's pleas to pull over and instead swung a backhand punch at her which hit the girl's face and head.


He drove around Hastings at speed, dodging other vehicles and driving on the footpath to get through traffic lights, throwing the woman's phone out the window when she pretended to call police.

Heading south along State Highway 2 he told the woman if he saw any police following them he wouldn't stop and that they would die a "luxurious death".

In Waipawa he stopped at a BP service station and put $75 worth of fuel in the car but took off without paying after he became enraged when a small black tin fell from his pants and broke open, spilling methamphetamine in the footwell.

The woman and her daughter were finally let go when he pulled over on Porangahau Rd and told them to get out.

Police located the defendant an hour later but he accelerated away from police when they activated their lights and the pursuit was eventually abandoned due to his reckless driving.

He was located several more times that day but each time police tried to follow him he would speed off and he eventually crashed his car and took off on foot.

Two samurai swords, a methamphetamine pipe and two empty "point bags" were found in the abandoned vehicle.

It wasn't until August 11 that police finally caught up to Karangaroa after he stole $137 worth of clothing from The Warehouse in Napier shortly after stealing petrol from Gull Night and Day on Omahu Rd.


He pleaded guilty to possession of an offensive weapon, assaulting a child, assaulting a female, failing to stop, possession of methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine utensils and two charges of reckless driving last month.

Yesterday Judge Rea said Karangaroa's most recent offending came on top of a "pretty active criminal record".

He agreed with the man's counsel Matthew Phelps that an awful lot of the defendant's offending had been driven by methamphetamine.

"Unfortunately it's the daily life of Judges in the criminal court to see young people destroying their lives with methamphetamine," he said.

Karangaroa was sentenced to 15 months' imprisonment, disqualified from obtaining or holding a driver's licence for the same period of time and ordered to pay reparation for the petrol and clothing he stole.