Nicky Dion Wharton
From a Dominion Post story 23 October 2004
TWINS Nicky and Neville Wharton did everything together. They lived rough in the heart of Wellington where the careless insult by another street person saw them attack him together, taking turns stomping and kicking his head. In the High Court at Wellington yesterday they headed through the same door to begin serving at least 41/2 years of the eight-year jail terms they received. Together they pleaded guilty to wounding Tama Reha with intent to cause grievous bodily harm. Mr Reha was severely brain damaged. "It seems where one goes the other follows," Justice Miller said, but that is not guaranteed to continue behind prison walls. A Corrections Department spokesman said it had no policy to keep twins together. Justice Miller said the provoking words did not excuse the attack.
"Impulsivity explains the first punch and that's it. The provocation explains the first punch and that's it," the judge said. The 37-year-old twins had worked in forestry but had not had stable jobs for years. They had abused alcohol and drugs and amassed more than 70 convictions, though none for serious violence. Just after 10pm on February 18, in Glover Park, that changed with Mr Reha's insult. He was punched and then left alone. But later he was followed into an alley and the brothers beat him before carrying him to a nearby car park and taking it in turns to stomp and kick his head and face. A witness described the stomping as being as hard as it could be. A passer-by told them to stop, and they did for a time, then resumed the attack when the person moved on. Justice Miller said by that time police had been called and arrived soon after. Mr Reha is in a wheelchair and needs 24-hour care. The court received a report saying his condition was likely to improve but not to the point where he could live independently.
Date of Birth
Wounded Wellington man Tama Reha with intent to do grievous bodily harm in February 2004
Victim suffered brain damage and lacerations to his throat
Sentenced to 8 years with a 4 year 6 month non parole period in October 2004
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OFFENCES / CONVICTIONS
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