20 Jun 2017

Wellington 'vigilante' tyre-slasher appeals sentence

4:49 pm on 20 June 2017

A self-described vigilante who slashed the tyres of parked cars in a Wellington suburb has appealed his sentence.

In April, David Johns, 53, was sentenced to 22 months in prison, after admitting a charge of criminal damage and carrying an offensive weapon.

car tyre puncture generic

Photo: 123RF

He slashed the tyres of more than 100 cars parked in residential streets in Miramar over a six-month period causing thousands of dollars worth of damage.

He said residents were frustrated by airport users leaving their cars there rather than paying for parking at the nearby airport, and called himself a vigilante.

His lawyer, Kirby Draper, today appealed his sentenced at the High Court in Wellington, asking the court to look at giving him home detention.

She said his motive was not fully understood at the sentencing, and that could have potentially contributed to a higher sentence.

Johns was "well-intentioned," she said.

"His concern was for the safety of the residents in the area. It was more than pure vigilantism and annoyance."

But Crown lawyer Adele Garrick said Johns took the law into his own hands, taking his anger out on members of the public to deter them from parking on the streets.

"The defendant shows a willingness to wilfully disregard the law to achieve his objective," she said.

She said given the number of people affected by his offending, the jail term was not excessive.

Justice Simon France reserved his decision.