Pitchfork assault admitted

A Canterbury man held a pitchfork under a woman’s jaw during a violent incident in which he threatened to kill her.

Trevor Bradley Mackie, 21, pleaded guilty to charges of assaulting the woman using the pitchfork as a weapon, assaulting her with intent to injure, and threatening to kill her.

Christchurch District Court Judge David Saunders remanded him in custody – no bail application was made – for sentencing on April 24.

He referred the case for a possible restorative justice meeting with the victim, and a pre-sentence report.

Defence counsel Clayton Williams asked for “the door to be kept open” for a home detention sentence. Judge Saunders ordered a home detention assessment for Mackie but said it was not an indication of the sentence, because it was serious offending and the starting point was a jail term.

The police said the incident took place at a Burnham property where he had been taken after becoming drunk at a work function.

During the assault on the woman he punched her, dragged her by the hair, called her names, and accused her of stealing his cannabis. He also slapped her and threw her against a metal gate.

While she tried to phone for help, he dragged her across a concrete driveway, kicked her, and stomped on her thighs. He became angry when he saw that her phone was connected and making a call.

Mackie then took a pitchfork lying on the ground and held it underneath her jaw.

When he heard police sirens, he dropped the pitchfork and dragged the woman back to his car.

He held his hand around her throat and told her, “I could kill you if I want.”

The woman received bruises and grazes to her arms, face, scalp, hip, and buttock area, back and shoulders. She underwent a scan at hospital to monitor swelling to her head.


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