R v Zembergs [2017] NZDC 12965

Published 15 November 2017

Sentencing — wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm — ill-treatment of a dog. The defendant came to New Zealand on a working visa and was boarding with the complainants. One evening he was at home with the two complainants and one of the complainants three young children. The defendant was sitting at the kitchen table with two knives when all of a sudden he stabbed the complainants pet dog in the back leaving the knife embedded in the dog. The first complainant was able to pull out the knife from the dogs back and began yelling at the defendant. The defendant then lunged at the complainants with the second knife. Both the first and second complainant were stabbed multiple times while the children were watching and screaming. The defendant was eventually able to be subdued and only stopped the attack when one of the complainants partners returned home. The defendant received a discount for lack of previous convictions, remorse and the difficulty of foreign national serving a sentence in a New Zealand prison. The defendant was sentenced to four years and ten months imprisonment. Judgment Date: 16 June 2017