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Epsom killer pleads guilty to another assault

Tue 29 Nov 2016 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback

Beauen Wallace-Loretz One of the two young men found guilty of murdering gay man Ihaia Gillman-Harris in an Epsom motel has now pleaded guilty to earlier attacking another man. Beauen Wallace-Loretz and Leonard Nattrass-Bergquist were in April found guilty of murdering Gillman-Harris in what appeared to be a violent robbery scheme hatched after the older man offered to pay one of the assailants for sex. Gillman-Harris later died in hospital and the attackers were both found guilty by a jury and sentenced to life in jail. The NZ Newswire service is reporting that Wallace-Loretz has pleaded guilty to attacking Puhoi man Mario Koch just months before the Epsom attack. Koch was left with serious facial injuries including a fractured eye socket after he tried to intervene at an incident at a party Wallace-Loretz attended. Mario Koch Koch's daughter posted earlier this year that her father "picked up a large stick to protect himself and his family prior to going outside to check what was happening. He was then assaulted by a group of boys outside his own house." Although the Puhoi attack, by Wallace-Loretz and three others, was reported to the police the case was closed due to lack of evidence. It was soon re-opened when Wallace-Loretz was arrested for the Epsom murder, but details of the Puhoi charges were not made available to the murder trial jury. Wallace-Loretz has pleaded guilty to punching Koch but will not serve any extra time on top of his current life sentence.    

Credit: Daily News staff

First published: Tuesday, 29th November 2016 - 5:15pm

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