Street basher blames victim for broken bones

An Aranui man claimed the victim of a bus stop bashing may have got broken bones because he was a beneficiary and may have had brittle bones through poor nutrition.

James Ian Norman Bisset, 30, described his victim as “just a peasant” in the Probation Service interview he did ahead of his Christchurch District Court sentencing.

His comments at the interview were described as extraordinary and outrageous by Judge John Macdonald who sentenced Bisset by video-link today on a charge of intentionally causing grievous bodily harm.

Bisset did not turn up for his sentencing early today and an arrest warrant was issued. He turned up later claiming a mix-up about the time and was held in custody until the video-link with the judge could be arranged again.

Police said Bisset and another attacker punched and kicked the man while he was on the ground. His jaw was broken in three places and needed surgical placement of titanium plates and screws. He also had bruising and swelling to the head. Bisset told police he punched him because he had threatened his family.

The victim impact statement said the man had now left Christchurch because he was fearful and he did not know Bisset. He suffered pain from the injury and had been repeatedly back to hospital because the jaw was still misaligned.

Defence counsel Andrew McCormick said another woman had made Bisset aware of threats to his partner and children, and had told Bisset where to find the victim. The attack took place at a bus stop in Pages Road.

Mr McCormick said it had been hoped to make an offer of an emotional harm payment to the victim, but no money was available.

Crown prosecutor Chris White said the comments by Bisset were “repugnant” and there could be no reduction in his sentence for remorse.

Judge Macdonald said Bisset had told the probation officer the victim’s injuries were “not that serious”, because he only had three fractures of the jaw. He could have stomped the victim on the head.

He blamed the victim because he was a beneficiary and “just a peasant” and therefore his bones were brittle because of a lack of nutrition.

“I find that outrageous,” said the judge.

Bisset also said that if the incident had happened four years ago, when he was still a member of the Hell’s Angels gang, he would simply have got a shotgun and shot him.

“I am unsure whether you were serious in all those comments,” said the judge. “They were most unusual for a defendant being interviewed for a pre-sentence report.”

Bisset’s partner and children were in court as the judge jailed him for four years.


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