‘Insane behaviour’ brings jail term

July 10, 2015 | By More

Court House-Sept-2013-08A 38-year-old meth-user, described as “utterly lawless” and a danger to the community, has been jailed for 18 months by a judge who was amazed that the man’s driving had not killed someone.

“It is a complete miracle that nobody died,” Christchurch District Court Judge Raoul Neave told Dwayne Roderick Robert Tapine.

Tapine had been hoping for home detention but that was seen as an unrealistic option both for the pre-sentence report writer and the judge who noted the man had nine convictions for escaping from custody.

Instead, Judge Neave piled up jail terms to 18 months and disqualified him from driving for 15 months on eight charges.

Tapine had admitted breaches of release conditions and intensive supervision, unlawfully getting into a car, unlicensed driving, reckless driving, and failing to stop for the police.

Defence counsel Angela Grant said Tapine had been in custody since May and was upset that the pre-sentence report did not recommend a community-based sentence.

Judge Neave replied: “He has 14 convictions for breaches of court orders, sentences, directions, and nine charges of escaping from custody.

“People who keep on offending and refuse to do what they are told cannot get any surprise when they come to court and the judge says, ‘I’m sorry. I’ve got to send you to prison. You haven’t earned it (a community-based sentence)’.”

He said there had been almost complete non-compliance with Tapine’s release conditions, and intensive supervision, and in May his fingerprints had been found on a vehicle that had been unlawfully taken.

On May 24, he was seen driving a Subaru on Keyes Road, New Brighton, and sped off when the police signalled to him.

They gave up the chase when speeds reached 130km an hour in residential streets.

He then blasted through some road works at 60km an hour with a workman jumping out of the way while Tapine drove over road cones. He stopped the car in New Brighton Mall and ran off.

Judge Neave noted five previous convictions for dangerous and reckless driving.

“You are clearly utterly lawless. You have a lack of respect for the laws and other people’s rights and interests. It makes you a danger to the community.”

He said he would have ruled out a home detention sentence even if it was recommended.

Referring to the pre-sentence report, he said: “The true problem is probably indicated in the reference to methamphetamine addiction, which would explain this completely insane behaviour.”

He told Tapine he could either stop offending or he would see judges imposing longer and longer jail terms until he died in prison, unlamented by anyone.

“It’s up to you – your choice,” said the judge.


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