18 Jun 2015

Crown rejects teen stabbed man in self-defence

5:38 pm on 18 June 2015

The Crown has rubbished the idea that a knife-wielding thief stabbed a dairy owner in self-defence.

Arun Kumar.

Arun Kumar. Photo: NZ POLICE

A 14 year-old is on trial at the High Court in Auckland for the murder of Arun Kumar, who was stabbed to death in his Henderson dairy in June last year.

A 13 year-old has been charged with manslaughter.

Today the Crown prosecutor Kieran Raftery made his closing arguments in the case.

He took the jurors through the security footage of the robbery that shows Mr Kumar initially asking his wife to bring him the phone in order to call the police.

But before she could give it to him, the 14-year-old knocked it from her hand and pulled out a knife.

Mrs Kumar ran out of the shop to raise the alarm while Mr Kumar retreated behind the counter. But the boy followed.

Mr Kumar initially picked up a box of straws and then put them down. When the boy was almost on him, Mr Kumar pulled out from under the counter a hollow metal pole - similar to a short length of vacuum cleaner pole.

Mr Raftery said it was infinitely better than a box of straws but no good against a knife.

By the time Mr Kumar had the pole, the boy was close enough to grab it.

Mr Raftery said the 14-year-old then stabbed Mr Kumar, landing a blow in his abdomen and then his shoulder.

The third and final wound struck Mr Kumar in the neck. There was a fourth lunge but Mr Kumar was able to push the boy away and the teen ran from the dairy.

Mr Raftery said he understood the defence would say it was the boy who was defending himself against Mr Kumar.

He said no one in their right mind watching the CCTV footage would think that. The way the boy went after Mr Kumar behind the counter was not a defensive action and it was Mr Kumar who was the victim from start to finish.

He said the idea the boy was acting in self-defence was utter rubbish.

Mr Raftery also foreshadowed the defence of the second boy, facing the charge of manslaughter.

He said he understood the 13-year-old's lawyers would argue their client pulled out of the robbery because he ran from the dairy.

But Mr Raftery said that only happened after Mrs Kumar wrestled the metal pole from him.

Mr Raftery said the 13-year-old was no wall-flower and had actually been the ring-leader.

The Court's heard both boys' mothers drank while they were pregnant and both had an upbringing that included neglect.

Mr Raftery said while both boys had tragic and difficult backgrounds, as bad as they may be, they were both guilty of the offences they were charged with.

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