1 Apr 2010

Man jailed 11 years for stabbing outside hotel

12:55 am on 1 April 2010

[b A man has been jailed at least 11 years over the fatal stabbing of a man outside a Hawke's Bay hotel.

Hulio Ataria, a 23-year-old gang prospect, was convicted of fatally stabbing Mark McCutcheon in the township of Ongaonga.

Mr McCutcheon had gone to the aid of a woman being assaulted in January last year.

Ataria admitted causing the death but said he acted in self-defence.

In March this year, a jury in the High Court in Napier found him guilty of murder.

Justice McKenzie on Wednesday sentenced Ataria to life imprisonment with a minimum non-parole period of 11-and-a-half-years.

Widow tells of impact on family

Mr McCutcheon's widow says the shock of seeing his body after he was killed ripped her heart out.

Paula McCutcheon read her victim impact statement in court on Wednesday.

She says her husband's killing had a huge impact on her children who were not able to go to school for weeks.