1 NEWS Reporter
The man who today admitted his dangerous driving caused the death of a skateboarder in Auckland has two previous convictions for drink driving.
Auckland truck driver Zhenghang Yu fled the scene after crashing into 16-year-old Jacob Pakura on January 14.
Jacob was skateboarding down a New Lynn road at around midnight, about to meet up with friends, when Yu's Honda Odyssey hit him.
He crashed his car again and narrowly avoided another head-on collision.
"After hitting Jacob, rather than stop and ascertain what had happened to Jacob, the defendant accelerated away at speed," said Juliet Bull, Crown prosecutor.
Yu, 33, has two previous convictions for drink driving and three years ago he was indefinitely disqualified.
He managed to get back his licence to work, with a zero alcohol tolerance.
But he says he wasn't drinking the night in question. Yu claims he had earlier taken painkillers not prescribed to him but to his wife and mother-in-law, and those painkillers left him feeling dizzy.
Yu says he can't remember what happened that night, but Jacob Pakura's family will never forget it.
Jacob's mother, Esther Pakura, welcomed the guilty plea saying, "I don't know what that really means but it sort of seems like he's taking responsibility in some way."
But she added: "Most people would stop, make sure, see if the person's okay. I don't think most people need to learn that lesson."
Police appealed to the public to find the culprit and it was another motorist who dobbed Yu in after seeing his erratic driving.
Dunedin student Matt Burns wants to know why police thought it necessary to charge at him and flatten him to the ground outside a birthday party event in Christchurch over the weekend.
He says he did nothing to provoke the police reaction and at the time was just on his phone trying to get an Uber home.
"There were a number of people there getting a bit lippy, but nothing excessive I would say," he said.
He says he got a knock on his hip and a bit of bruising from the incident and the police response was excessive.
Police say they were called to the address in Manchester St after a noise complaint was made by neighbours at around 1am on Sunday.
They say both Armourguard staff who attended the call initially, and later police themselves, had bottles thrown at them.
Senior Sergeant Gordon Spite told 1 NEWS it is important to note that brief video clips "do not necessarily provide a full picture of what occurred prior to and after the event".
The crowd was heavily intoxicated, abusive and grabbing at the Police shields- Senior Sergeant Gordon Spite
"The Armourguard staff were having bottles thrown at them. Police attended and spoke with the host of the party who asked for assistance from Police in closing the party down and removing those people attending. While speaking with the party host Police had bottles thrown at them," he added.
Mr Spite said because of the behaviour the decision was made to put on protective clothing and prepare to disperse the crowd.
"Party goers were warned that they needed to disperse and leave the area. They were moved from the property and out on to the street where they continued to be aggressive. The crowd was heavily intoxicated, abusive and grabbing at the Police shields," he said.
"Once on the street Police repeatedly warned the crowd that they risked being arrested for disorderly assembly if they did not leave the area but they did not disperse. Police then advanced on the crowd to disperse them and the person pictured was caught up in this action," he said.
Matt Burns says he never saw any bottles being thrown towards the police and from what he saw there was not any particularly aggressive behaviour towards them. He recalls the police saying to clear the property and says the group were walking away.
"A couple were getting lippy towards them but they weren’t actually posing a threat," he said.
Mr Burns says he doesn't want the matter taken any further, but would just like an explanation of why police thought they had to use such force when he "wasn’t really doing anything towards them".