13 Nov 2015

Paranoid drug addict shooter sentenced

4:56 pm on 13 November 2015

A man who believed he was being followed by government drones and who fired shots into a police car outside Waitakere Hospital has been sentenced to four years and eight months in jail.

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Photo: RNZ / Alexander Robertson

Corrie Ron Schuster was addicted to methamphetamine and believed the government were using drones to follow him.

The 28-year-old's paranoid delusions culminated in him firing shots into a wall because he believed the people were government agents and then fired shots into a police car.

Today Schuster was sentenced at the High Court in Auckland to four years and eight months in prison.

The court was told that Schuster had paranoid delusions brought on by his use of methamphetamine.

He believed his brother and flatmates were government agents and that the police and intelligence agents were using drones to follow him.

Schuster got a rifle and a shotgun for his own protection and to shoot down the drones.

He also thought he had been infected with fibres and biological implants.

On this day back in October last year he went to confront his brother and his flatmates about being followed.

When he got to the flat, he found his brother was not home but his brother's flatmate was.

She was in bed with her boyfriend who later managed to jump out a window.

Schuster fired a shot into the television and asked the flatmate to search online about what he believed was happening to him. He also fired another shot into the wall, telling the flatmate he would blow her head off.

Schuster then demanded to borrow shoes because he thought his had been tampered with by government agents. He also got the keys to the flatmate's car because he said his own car had been bugged.

Crown prosecutor Erin Woolley said the experience must have been truly terrifying and the woman still got frightened whenever she heard loud noises.

After leaving the flat, Schuster headed to the Waitakere Hospital because he was not feeling well.

When he got there, he saw a police car and shot it three times from different angles.

No one was hurt but Justice Thomas said the lives of the 17 patients inside the hospital were put in danger by stray rounds.

The court heard how Schuster had been a butcher and had been in a relationship for five years but when that ended he turned to methamphetamine.

Schuster's lawyer Annabel Maxwell-Scott said her client was horrified with what he had done and was determined never to go near methamphetamine again.

Justice Thomas said although Schuster had a mental illness, she had to sentence him on the basis that his psychosis was induced by methamphetamine.

Justice Thomas did take time off his sentence for his illness and his early guilty pleas to the three charges of aggravated burglary, careless discharge of a firearm and unlawful possession of ammunition.

Schuster has previous convictions of using a firearm and aggravated robbery.