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Judge satisfied that bail works for email abuser

A man who sent close to 100 abusive emails to his partner in one night has been granted bail.

The man appeared on family violence charges via audio-visual link in Masterton District Court recently.

Judge Barbara Morris said despite the man’s history and the police prosecution’s opposition to bail, she was satisfied the bail conditions were sufficient to protect the complainant and said the state of New Zealand’s prisons should deter any breach.

In her decision, Judge Morris said the man was accused of subjecting his partner of 11 years to extensive psychological abuse and had breached protection orders on more than one occasion.

The most recent breach at the end of February saw the man allegedly “shouting, yelling, and abusing” the complainant in front of their children.

After the incident, the police said the man sent the complainant 95 abusive emails overnight.

It was alleged he “told the complainant that he f-ing hated her, and threatened to kill her if she did anything to the children”, Judge Morris said.

Police said he then sent an email to the children when he saw they were playing on an Xbox, telling them “to stay the f-off” and that he was still their dad.

“If the light turns on, expect me in 29 minutes.”

Judge Morris said the man had a history of family violence and breaching protection orders over more than a decade.

She said between 2020 and 2022 police received “a significant number of family violence callouts”.

Judge Morris said even though the proposed bail address was some distance from Wairarapa, bail was still opposed by police.

However, she said there was no indication of actual physical violence committed, and the bail address – coupled with conditions of a 24-hour curfew, no access to internet-capable devices, and a non-contact order – should protect the complainant.

Judge Morris warned the man that he would not be bailed again should he breach any of those conditions.

“You have already witnessed what is happening in the prisons at the moment. There are huge resourcing problems making it very, very unpleasant,” she said.

“If you breach bail, you would not be bailed again, and given the 22 hours of lockdowns at Remutaka, it’s not a pleasant place to be.”

The man was granted bail with the order to return to court on a separate charge later this month.

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