A 30-year-old man who spat at The Warehouse security guard who caught him shoplifting has been sentenced to a lengthy term of community work.
Shawn Walter Henry, a current resident of the City Mission, was also sentenced for an incident at a city library when his frustrations boiled over – he pushed over some shelving and a computer monitor which was smashed.
Christchurch District Court Judge Jane Farish told him: “Maybe you need to throttle back a bit in terms of how you respond to people.”
The judge set aside a probation recommendation for imprisonment and imposed 300 hours of community work for the list of charges that Henry had admitted.
She believed he probably suffered from a personality disorder which meant he could act in an anti-social way at time, but his risk was still seen as low.
He was marginalised because of his own actions, and unless he committed some serious offence he would be unlikely to receive any treatment from a Department of Corrections psychologist.
Defence counsel Kiran Paima said Henry acknowledged that he faced two assault charges because of “intolerable behaviour”. He had reacted badly when the security guard tried to take his photo because he was “a very private man”.
Henry is seen as a talented golf tutor who has been teaching at the Hagley course during his days away from the City Mission.
He was charged with possession of an offensive weapon – a golf club – as well as assault and threatening behaviour for one incident.
He has admitted possession of a small amount of cannabis, failing to give details to the police, resisting a constable, breach of a curfew, and intentional damage for the incident at the library.
He also admitted theft of a belt from The Warehouse, and assault for spitting at the security office who caught him and then tried to take his photograph so that he could be trespassed from the stores.
Judge Farish decided Henry’s time should be occupied with doing the community work sentence, possibly at a building centre at Rolleston where he could learn work skills. She also ordered him to pay $228 for the damage at the library.