Man appears for one-punch assault

Invercargill District Court.

A MAN convicted of manslaughter in 2017 appeared in court for sentence last Friday for another one-punch assault which left a man unconscious last year.

Tyrone Palmer (22) appeared before Judge Russell Walker for sentence in the Invercargill District Court for wounding with intent to injure in Invercargill on May 30.

Palmer had been out with a friend on the night of the attack when he walked past the victim.

The victim, who was with a female friend, made a comment to Palmer’s friend. Palmer then followed the victim while abusing him. The victim told Palmer to go away, crossed the road and walked up to a group of people. Palmer went up to the man without warning and punched him in the left side of the head, causing him to instantaneously collapse on his back on the footpath, Judge Walker said.

The man was rendered unconscious and suffered a brain bleed and bruising as a result of the punch.

Defence counsel Hugo Young said Palmer had taken some major steps to sorting out his life since last year’s assault including drug and alcohol counselling and a course for fathers.

He had gained employment, was working hard, had a supportive partner and a young son, Mr Young said. Palmer was 16 when he killed Matthew Coley who died from a one-punch hit to his head.

Palmer received a jail term of 22 months.

Judge Walker said Crown submissions in relation to the latest offence noted aggravating features included the premeditated aspect of the punch, the fact it was an unprovoked attack and Palmer’s conviction for manslaughter, “which was also an unprovoked one punch to the head”.

Judge Walker sentenced Palmer to seven months’ home detention and ordered him to pay reparation of $1000.

“There are some good things happening in your life. You need to take this on board, you can’t afford to make any more mistakes like you did on this night – you’ve got too much to lose – a partner, a son, a job,” Judge Walker said.