A shoplifting teenager who was on bail when he felled and killed a security guard with a single punch has been jailed for two years.

Sydney Jayden Kokiri was sentenced today in the High Court at Auckland by Justice Pheroze Jagose to two years' imprisonment over the death of Serbian national Goran Milosavljevic.

The 18-year-old had earlier pleaded guilty to the security guard's manslaughter.

Milosavljevic, who was just months away from becoming a New Zealand citizen, was struck by a single punch from Kokiri in the Papakura Countdown store on May 2 last year.

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Kokiri, who was 17 at the time, was in the supermarket with his mother, girlfriend and another woman.

He, however, stole a charity donation box and a box of raisins and attempted to flee.

Milosavljevic stopped the teen, who swung a punch at the security officer but missed.

The Serbian man then hit Korkiri in the face, grabbed him around his neck and held him against the front window of the store - telling the teen to leave.

A crowd, including Kokiri's mother gathered, before the pair were broken up.

But Kokiri wasn't done and he threw another punch - hitting Milosavljevic on the side of his head.

The guard fell and hit his head on the concrete floor.

The entire incident was captured on CCTV.

Kokiri's mum then encouraged her son to flee and he ran down the road, changing his shirt with a friend in a bid to escape the law.

However, the next morning - at 3am - Milosavljevic died in Auckland Hospital.

Kokiri was later arrested and charged with manslaughter.

Colleagues of Goran Milosahljevic from both Countdown, and his former employer Allied Security, attended his farewell service in Māngere. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Colleagues of Goran Milosahljevic from both Countdown, and his former employer Allied Security, attended his farewell service in Māngere. Photo / Brett Phibbs

While neither of Milosavljevic's two sons, Alex and Stefan, wished to attend today's sentencing, their statements were read to the court.

"Mr Kokiri, I suggest you listen closely to what [the Crown prosecutor] is about to say," Justice Pheroze Jagose said.

Milosavljevic's eldest son described being woken by a message from Allied Security and went straight to hospital.

"We were hoping for miracles but it didn't happen," the statement said.

"I am broken, I am still broken after almost 10 months, and I will always have a hole in my heart.

"At least we got the chance to see him one last time and say goodbye to him."

Milosavljevic's youngest son remembered simply praying for his dad to live.

"He worked very hard so we could have a better life," he said of the former baker.

"I want to make him proud."

Goran Milosahljevic's two boys, Alex (left) and Stefan (right), carry their father's coffin. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Goran Milosahljevic's two boys, Alex (left) and Stefan (right), carry their father's coffin. Photo / Brett Phibbs

The Herald earlier revealed Kokiri was on bail over several charges at the time he attacked Milosavljevic.

Kokiri was facing two burglary charges relating to alleged offending in December 2017.

The teenager was also allegedly found in the staffroom of a Supercheap Auto store on April 2 last year. He was charged with burglary and remanded on bail.

A warrant was issued for Kokiri's arrest after he failed to appear in court on April 26.

He was then charged with dangerous driving and failing to remain stopped for police on April 29. He was also charged with driving while forbidden.

When Kokiri appeared in court on April 30 he said he wasn't in court because he was at hospital with his ill mother.

Again, however, he was remanded on bail and just days later he attacked Milosavljevic.

After Milosavljevic died, Kokiri was arrested for breaching his bail conditions and appeared in the Papakura District Court before the case was transferred to the High Court after the manslaughter charge was laid.

All of Kokiri's District Court matters have been dealt with and he has a total of three previous burglary convictions and three driving-related convictions.

The Countdown security guard died after being attacked at his place of work. Photo / Supplied
The Countdown security guard died after being attacked at his place of work. Photo / Supplied

The teen was initially granted name suppression, but in June last year Justice Anne Hinton declined to further extend it.

In her decision, the judge noted Kokiri's mother had reported being targeted by a driver hurling bottles at her and shouting: "Your son is a murderer."

Kokiri's mum also said: "The majority of Papakura knows about it because it was all over Facebook."

His lawyer, Ish Jayanandan, said Kokiri - a father of two, including a young daughter - had not been to prison before and was "extremely distressed about the whole situation".

She told the court today her client has "witnessed nothing but violence in his upbringing".

The teen, who suffers from drug and alcohol addiction, also had a promising rugby league career which fell by the wayside as a result of his upbringing, the court heard.

Justice Jagose did not allow media to photograph or film Kokiri today.

He did give Kokiri a 25 per cent discount on his sentence for his youth, remorse and prospects of rehabilitation.

He also gave the teen a 25 per cent discount for the guilty plea.

Sydney Kokiri was supported in court today by his family. Photo / Sam Hurley
Sydney Kokiri was supported in court today by his family. Photo / Sam Hurley

Kokiri would have been sentenced to home detention, Justice Jagose said, had a suitable residence been found.

He said the teen "seems to be a good candidate for home detention if away from the environment of South Auckland".

After Milosavljevic died, Countdown managing director Dave Chambers said his colleagues were "deeply saddened by this tragic loss".

"No New Zealander should go to work and not expect to return home to their loved ones," he said.

Milosavljevic moved to New Zealand in 2009 and had been working for Countdown Papakura for eight months.

On one trip to New Zealand, Milosavljevic returned to Serbia on the first available flight after learning of both his parents' deaths.

They had died in a car crash as they left the airport in Belgrade after farewelling their son.