New Zealand: Man jailed for brutal assault on Family Court lawyer



A man has been sent to prison for an assault on a Family Court lawyer in a courthouse elevator that was so brutal the victim played dead.

“It happened so fast… The force [of the blows] was unrelenting and I just wanted it to stop,” Brintyn Smith said in a victim impact statement read to the Whang?rei District Court.

Smith, who did not attend Friday’s sentencing of 35-year-old Isaac Aydon for the attack that left the lawyer unable to work, detailed feeling so scared while trapped in the elevator and taking multiple blows to the left side of his head that he pretended to be dead.

“When the elevator doors opened, I could hear people screaming and shouting.

“I vividly recall the sheer panic of people around me and seeing and feeling a lot of blood… and the smell,” his statement said.

The court heard Aydon was on the second floor of the busy courthouse about 9.50am on 9 March, hanging around the lift area, as five courts were about to get under way for the day.

Below on the ground floor, Smith caught the elevator to the second floor and was about to exit as the doors opened.

At that moment Aydon launched himself at Smith, punching him in the face and knocking him backwards into the lift in an unprovoked attack.

The doors closed behind him, blocking Smith from exiting the lift, and Aydon punched his victim in the face and head, rendering him semi-conscious.

Smith had to be rushed to hospital in an ambulance and suffered multiple injuries, including a fractured sternum, nose and thyroid, extensive bruising to the face and a concussion.

He has since reassigned all his Family Court files and had to bring on another lawyer to oversee his employees.