Home' Greymouth Star : August 3rd 2015 Contents www.greystar.co.nz
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Cilla Black —
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MONDAY, AUGUST 3, 2015
Est. 1866 Phone 769 7900
Tourist puts foot
down to 120kph
A rental vehicle was clocked doing
119kph in the 80kph zone near
Paroa as the speeding driver headed
to the Greymouth Railway Station
to return the car. The car was seen
exceeding the speed limit on several
occasions and also making dangerous
passing manoeuvres. Greymouth
police are seeking information on a
vehicle seen doing a burnout at the
intersection of Cowper and Raleigh
streets at 9.25pm yesterday.
Boy, 7, rescued
The NZCC Rescue Helicopter was
called to pick up a seven-year-old
Christchurch boy who broke his leg
on the Porters Pass Skifield yesterday
afternoon. Helicopter staff said the
boy suffered a nasty compound
leg break. He was airlifted to
Christchurch Hospital shortly after
1pm. The Greymouth-based rescue
helicopter took the call as all the
Christchurch rescue craft were busy
elsewhere at the time.
Lotto luck struck twice at
Westport New World last week,
selling two second division winning
tickets, each worth $18,478. The
Westport winners were among 15
punters around the country to get a
healthy boost to their bank accounts
in the draw on Saturday night.
Heavy, thundery rain at times
An American animal psychic
claims that Cecil the Lion has
spoken to her and given instructions
on how to deal with its death. Cecil,
a 13-year-old lion in Zimbabwe
which was killed by a hunter in
early July, apparently moved self-
proclaimed ‘animal communicator’
Karen Anderson to tears with its
message. Anderson posted on her
Facebook that she “wanted to let
him know how loved and honoured
he is” when she made contact with
the protected animal, the death of
which has caused outrage towards
Minnesota dentist and hunter
Walter Palmer. “L et not the actions
of these few men defeat us or allow
darkness to enter our hearts. If we
do then we become one of them.
Raise your vibration and allow
this energy to move us forward,”
Cecil said, according to Anderson.
Despite the possibility that talking
to Cecil would unveil clues about
the death, the animal did not offer
an explanation. The lion was quoted
as saying “What happened does not
need to be discussed as it is what it
is.” — Daily Mail
A former Westport dairy manager
who shot a cow in the leg and dumped
another live cow in an offal pit
after breaking the tails of hundreds
of others, was convicted in the
Greymouth District Court today on
a raft of charges of wilful and reckless
Michael James Whitelock pleaded
guilty to three charges each of wilfully
ill treating an animal, and one of
reckless ill treatment.
Whitelock also offered guilty pleas to
one charge of unlawful possession of
a firearm, two of possessing a firearm
without a licence, one of possession of
explosives and another of attempting
to per vert the course of justice.
Judge Stephen O’Driscoll convicted
Whitelock on all charges.
While a dairy unit manager at
the Landcorp Totara dairy farm at
Cape Foulwind, Whitelock broke
the tails of 152 cows and 57 heifers,
and subsequently failed to provide
adequate treatment for their injuries.
Whitelock and three other farm
employees — Cameron George
Intemann Hurst, Hayden Lee Flintoff
and James Anthony Murphy — shot
one cow in the leg, while Whitelock
and Hurst beat another cow. Hurst,
Flintoff and Murphy have previously
been sentenced in Christchurch.
Whitelock also shot another cow in
an attempt to try to euthanise it, and
then dumped it in the offal pit without
making sure the cow was dead. He also
made an injured cow walk 2km to the
offal pit while it had a broken hoof,
and made another’s cow udder bleed
after beating it.
Whitelock and Hurst were also both
heard shouting the phrase, “this is
Totara b...h”, while violently attacking
Whitelock had a shotgun, a .243
and a .22 rifle, for which he had no
licences, alongside .243 ammunition,
which were found stashed in his
children’s bedroom in Timaru. He was
also charged with trying to persuade
a witness to give a false statement to
Whitelock had been employed by
Landcorp in July 2012. He was sacked
in September 2013, at the same time
as senior management at the farm were
made aware of a large number of cows
suffering from broken tails, something
verified by a veterinary inspection of
An internal investigation by the farm
uncovered a number of “serious animal
welfare issues”, which were reported
to the Ministry for Primary Industries
and Landcorp management.
In the same month MPI began to
investigate the case, and, alongside
the host of animal welfare issues,
investigators uncovered phone and
text messages which showed that
Whitelock had tried to cover up the
firearms he possessed and the abuse
which had taken place at the farm.
An assault on a cow with a fencing
baton left the animal with a “traumatic
injury to the eye”. Whitelock then
tried to kill the cow, but failed and
ended up putting it into the offal pit
while it was still alive.
Prior to a cow being euthanised it
was shot in the leg by Flintoff, under
orders from Whitelock, while he,
Murphy, and Hurst each shot the cow
in its other legs.
Another animal was chased, pulled
to the ground by the tail and punched
and kicked. After the attack Whitelock
said that he “ loved the time of the year”
when he “got to beat the cows”.
He also swept the legs away on an
animal while it was on the milking
platform, something which was
apparently done in a “fit of temper”
when the cow repeatedly kicked off
the milking cups. Another animal that
did the same thing was beaten on the
legs with a bar with such force that the
bar smashed in his hands.
Fellow defendant Toni Lee-Pottle
had two charges of attempting to
per vert the course of justice and one
of unlawfully possessing explosives
Whitelock was remanded on bail to
be sentenced on October 7.
Arson razes vacant stables
Michael James Whitelock
A stable block at the Omoto
Racecourse was razed by an early
morning arson early today.
The Greymouth Volunteer Fire
Brigade was called about 3.50am
after a passerby on nearby State
highway 7 noticed flames.
Fire chief Lee Swinburn said the
stables were well ablaze when two
fire appliances and a support vehicle
arrived at the scene 10 minutes later.
Daylight showed that the gable
end of the corrugated iron stables,
built between the 1970s and 1980s,
was all that remained standing
on the site, just across the railway
“ It had obviously been going for
some time before we were notified,”
Mr Swinburn said. “ When we
arrived half the building was on the
With dry sawdust on the floors
and dry framing in the building, the
fire was well seated. The brigade had
to deploy portable pumps to gain
water from a nearby reser voir to
fight the fire.
“ We had it pretty much out within
an hour,” Mr Swinburn said.
The 20m-long stable had five
or six individual stalls. It was not
connected to mains power and there
were no horses housed there.
The fire scene remained under
police guard this morning, with
an investigation under way by the
Greymouth CIB and the West
Coast Fire Ser vice fire safety officer.
While the cause was not yet clear,
Greymouth Jockey Club president
Jill Bennington said no trainers
were based at the course during the
year but the loss of the stables was a
nuisance in view of the busy summer
racing season in December and
January, when Omoto played host to
up to 80 horses.
While the stables were insured,
rebuilding them in time for summer
would be “a bit of a mission”.
“It ’s still annoying because it’s
a very short period to get them
The stables were on leased Kiwi
Rail land so the club would have to
go through the State rail operator
before rebuilding, she said.
PICTURE: Brendon McMahon
All that remains of the stables at Omoto this morning.
An unruly party in Greymouth and
a young man exposing himself in
public were among the booze-fuelled
incidents dealt with by police at the
A 21-year old man was arrested
for exposing himself to police near
a hotel in the centre of Greymouth,
late on Saturday.
Police said the man ran from officers
when spoken to, but was located
hiding at the back of Westpac Bank,
in Mackay Street. He was taken to
the Greymouth Police Station and
was later released on a pre-charge
warning for disorderly behaviour.
Just after midnight yesterday
police closed down a disorderly
party in Milton Road, Greymouth.
One young man was arrested and
a number of alcohol infringement
notices were issued.
West Coast police prevention
manager senior sergeant Allyson
Ealam said the party organiser had
been “warned to keep things under
control” but police were called
back three times to speak to unruly
With everyone tanked up, the party
house was trashed, with at least one
“The party was closed down and
the occupants moved on. A number
of bottles were smashed on the
footpath ... and rubbish left as they
moved on,” Mrs Ealam said.
Street signs in the area were also
A 17-year-old Greymouth boy
arrested for disorderly conduct
nearby was later released on a pre-
charge warning. Some partygoers
were issued with $200 alcohol
Meanwhile, in Westport on
Saturday night a drunk and injured
young man was located outside the
Westport Police Station, following
an after-ball party.
Police said the 17-year-old
presented himself with minor
Inquiries showed he had been in a
fight at a party in Derby Street.
“He was quite agitated when police
spoke to him however he calmed
down and was taken to hospital,”
police staff said.
A 23-year-old Westport man blew
593mg after being stopped by police.
He was charged with drink-driving.
Police close drunk, unruly party
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