21 Nov 2018

Second teen saw accused with knife before fight with homeless man, high court told

2:54 pm on 21 November 2018

The teenager involved in an attack on a Flaxmere man has denied seeing the 14-year-old defendant carry out the stabbing.

Haami Hanara, 14, is accused of the murder of Kelly Donner in Flaxmere in March 2018.

Haami Hanara Photo: Pool photo

The witness told the High Court in Napier that she saw the accused with a knife up his sleeve, but she did not see him stab the man.

The Crown says 14-year-old Haami Hanara fatally stabbed Kelly Donner, 40, over an argument about a torch.

Earlier today a 16-year-old witness told the court that she saw Mr Hanara holding a bloody knife shortly after the attack, and he told her that he had stabbed Mr Donner.

Defence lawyer Eric Forster questioned whether she saw the defendant pass anything to another member of the group that night.

He also asked if it was possible that someone else had stabbed Mr Donner, to which she replied 'No'.

Mr Hanara has pleaded guilty to one charge of burglary and pleaded not guilty to a charge of murder. He was in a a group of five teenagers who were planning to rob the bottle store attached to the Flax Bar and Eatery that night.

"We were going to rob the bottle store and go get drunk," one of the teenagers charged with assaulting Mr Donner that night told the court.

Speaking via videolink from a youth justice facility the 16-year-old said they tried to break into the bottle store first but were unsuccessful so broke into a caged area behind the Flax Bar and Eatery to search for something to break into the bottle store.

They encountered Mr Donner in the caged area collecting cigarette butts. They exchanged greetings and then Mr Hanara asked to borrow Mr Donner's torch, she said.

"Haami used it to look for stuff. Kelly was helping us," she said

After a couple of minutes Kelly asked for his torch back, and Mr Hanara refused, she said.

"He was angry. He said give me my torch back... angry as... and then Haami said Nah... and he got aggressive.

"We all started grabbing bottles," she said.

The fight escalated and they all left the caged area, but continued throwing bottles and bricks at Mr Donner outside the yard.

"He came out of the gap that we came through and he started coming at us," she said.

"I hit him. With bottles."

A bike was thrown at Mr Donner and then more bricks and bottles, she said.

"And then he was on the ground and then we all started hitting him."

She said she saw Mr Hanara hitting Mr Donner four or five times.

"I thought he was punching him."

Mr Donner was just lying there on this back, she said.

She told Crown prosecutor Steve Manning that it was only after the attack that she saw for the first time that Mr Hanara was holding a knife.

"There was blood on it," she said.

"He said: 'I stabbed him, run'."

She said Mr Hanara then put the knife in his pocket and they all ran away.

Under cross-examination by Mr Forster, the witness said Mr Donner was picking on Mr Hanara because he had borrowed the torch and was also the "littlest one" of the group.

"Because Haami asked him for the torch. He was the first one to talk to him, and then he asked Haami for it back, and that is how it all started. It's like he just wanted to pick on Haami not the rest of us," she said.

After the attack, they all saw Mr Donner lying on the ground not moving but no-one went to help him, she said.

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