1 Dec 2023

Second person charged with murder over death of Nelson man James Whitikau Barton

1:09 pm on 1 December 2023

Nelson District Court (file image). Photo:

Homicide detectives have charged a second person over the death of Nelson man James Whitikau Barton.

Barton was found with critical injuries in Orchard Street in Stoke and died in hospital on November 10.

A 33-year-old man appeared in Nelson District Court on a charge of murder this morning, when he was granted interim name suppression and did not enter a plea.

He was remanded in custody to appear in the High Court on December 15.

The public gallery was filled with members of Barton's family and Judge Robert Spear said he understood it was a difficult time, but he warned them to maintain decorum, or the public gallery would be cleared.

He issued another warning after the defendant and several members of the public traded insults.

"I'll wait for you when you get out, with a shotgun," one woman said, as while leaving the courtroom.

Police have also charged a 30-year-old woman with being an accessory after the fact to murder.

Detective Inspector Lex Bruning said information from the public had helped police piece together what happened on the night of Barton's death, leading to the two arrests.

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