In Court with Assumpta Buchanan - Solomon Star News

In Court with Assumpta Buchanan

18 September 2018

* Bound over sentence for trespassers
* Fined for wounding incident
* Man guilty of assault

Bound over sentence for trespassers

Two juveniles who trespassed into a private residence at Kombuvatu, East Honiara in May this year has been given a bound over sentence yesterday.

The males aged 16 and 14 who cannot be named for legal reasons were sentenced after pleading guilty to criminal trespass charges.

Deputy Chief Magistrate Ricky Iomea imposed a bound over sentence for 12 months to keep the peace and be of good behaviour in the sum of $400.

This means they are under a bond where they are not to re-offend or misbehave within a 12 month period.

The two juveniles and another male entered the complainant’s house at about 3am on 6 May 2018.

The complainant woke up, followed them and captured the juvenile’s friend.

The two juveniles however escaped out of the house.

They were later arrested and charged for this offence.

Fined for wounding incident

A MAN has been fined $1,000 yesterday for wounding another man with a bush knife in July at a motel in Honiara.

Jonathan Melata who pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful wounding has until October 1 to pay up his fine.

Failure to do so will result in a month imprisonment.

 The victim in this matter was drinking with his friends on the morning of July 21 when the accused who was already drunk came and started arguing with one of the victim’s friends.

The victim having tried to control the accused however received a punch from him (Melata).

The accused was chased back to his house but then returned later with a bush knife by which he (Melata) attempted to strike the victim when he (victim) tried to calm him.

The knife slightly cut the victim’s belly despite him jumping away from the knife.

Melata was chased away by some men in that area and he was reported to the Police who later arrested and charged him.


Man guilty of assault

A MAN accused of assaulting another man which resulted in him receiving a broken leg at Skyline area, Central Honiara in 2016 has been found guilty of the offence yesterday.

Principal Magistrate Augustine Aulanga after convicting Allen Owen of one count of grievous harm charge adjourned the matter for sentencing submissions on September 28.

“On overall assessment, I find the defendant is not a witness of truth,” Mr Aulanga said in his judgment yesterday.

“His evidence that he only slapped the victim was at odd with the evidence given by the victim and his wife.”

Mr Aulanga said the victim’s evidence was given in a way to minimise his participation in the offending or to put blame on other person.

“Therefore, he is not an honest and truthful witness.

“As the evidence overwhelming established, he is the person who pushed the victim down the slope that resulted in the victim’s right leg was broken.

“He intentionally and deliberately did that to him.

“Therefore, I find the prosecution has proven all the elements of this offence beyond reasonable doubt and therefore convict him as charged.”

Mr Aulanga handed his judgment without a closing submission from the defence counsel.

He only received written closing submissions from the prosecution on the last occasion.

Mr Aulanga said he advised the defence counsel to file theirs before yesterday but since they did not filed any, he then decided to deliver the judgment yesterday rather than to continue to wait.

The court yesterday heard that on 27 August 2016 at Point Cruz, the victim and his wife received a phone call from the victim’s father advising them not to drop off at Skyline if they return home because some people wanted to kill the victim.

The couple however dropped off at Skyline and the victim went to pay cigarette whilst his wife was waiting for him at the roadside.

This was on the same side where the US war memorial is located.

It was heard that it was at that time that the accused approached the victim at the top of a slope and assaulted him which resulted in the victim falling to the ground.

The court heard the victim got up and the accused used both hands and pushed him on the chest down the hill.

Mr Aulanga said the victim described that he fell down the slope in a clockwise backward-twisted motion and landed on his right leg.

“That fall instantly broke his right leg,” Mr Aulanga said.

“He realised his leg was broken and so he just sat down few meters down the slope and was holding on to his leg.

“Another person by the name of Jack came and rolled him further down the slope again.

“Later, the defendant’s brother came and carried him to his house.”

The victim was admitted at the National Referral Hospital from August to November 2016 and though he was discharged, he continued to use a wheel chair and a crutch to move around.

Mr Aulanga also found the evidence of the victim’s wife uncontradicted and clearly in support of the evidence of the victim.

Owen on the other hand told the court he asked the victim why he asked his niece who was dumb for sex but he denied it.

He said he continued to ask the victim about that rumour and having disagreed with his response he slapped him with his right hand.

The accused further said the victim then jumped out of him and escaped down-hill and putting the blame on Jack as the one who attacked and broke the victim’s leg.

The victim used to work as a carpenter before the incident.

“Now, his walking was imbalance and therefore no longer involved in carpentry work as used to before,” Mr Aulanga said.

Mr Aulanga further added that the medical doctor who examined the victim gave evidence on oath that he discovered the victim’s right tibia bone that extended to his knee was broken.

“Being concerned for his blood vessels because of the swelling to his leg, he then inserted external fixtures/antenna/braces to support his broken leg.”

He added that the victim was kept under close observation for a month in hospital and the reason for the long admission was for insertion of internal fixation of his right leg.

The victim was discharged with walking aid but returned on 20 October 2016 in order to remove his external fixator and a second surgery was conducted whereby his leg had to be supported by internal fixator put under his skin.

The doctor also explained that the fracture to the victim’s right joint was very concerning since it may cause inflammation even if the fracture is healed.

“In the medical report, he stated that the fracture can greatly affect the victim’s life and may drastically reduce his capacity to enjoy complicated tasks or sports,”the doctor’s report said.