RIP Greg King

November 3rd, 2012 at 5:43 pm by David Farrar

The media have just started to report that top lawyer is dead. My thoughts go out to his wife with two young daughters, but King’s death will touch many many people. He was one of , if not the most, respected criminal defence lawyers in NZ. He also had a great passion for public policy, and presented the Court Report and often took part in forums with others like Stephen Franks, as an exemplar of identifying issues, and agreeing or disagreeing on solutions without rancour.

His death is a huge loss to the legal fraternity, and those who knew him well. And again, his family most of all.

His death has been reported as non-suspicious and referred to the coroner, which of course is code for suicide. All suicides are hard to comprehend, and this one almost inexplicable. It makes his death even more tragic.

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164 Responses to “RIP Greg King”

  1. GPT1 (2,106 comments) says:

    I heard the news about an hour ago. To say it is shocking is an understatement. A tragedy, especially with a young family. I was fortunate enough to met Greg several years ago at Lit Skills. He was simply inspirational. The law and advocacy simply flowed from him. He was genuine, supportive and personally interested and, freakishly, would remember you even years later. As with so many of the most brilliant he had his eccentricities – I remember someone telling me that if it wasn’t for his staff he would never earn any money because all he did was law. Billing just happened. Clearly he also had some serious demons. The profession has lost a giant but his family have lost so much more and with them my thoughts are with.

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  2. Sponge (156 comments) says:

    Not sure about suicide David. I understand he had poorly controlled diabetes. Terrible for his family and a big loss to the legal fraternity.

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  3. SGA (959 comments) says:

    DPF – he’s also been struggling with diabetes. You might be right, but not so fast on the suicide.

    [DPF: Sadly it was not natural causes. I'm definite]

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  4. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    It may be too soon to conclude it was suicide. He did have a medical condition.

    It is very sad either way, but really makes one think, about people, to contemplate that a man like that would take his own life. I had one period of depression in my life time. It was a terribly bleak place.

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  5. seanmaitland (472 comments) says:

    Despite a lot of people not liking him because of his success at defending dubious people, he was very good at what he did, and gave everyone he defended a good chance. He also showed up how inept the police in NZ are many a time.

    I find it hard to believe someone would commit suicide next to their car though?

    RIP, I hope his family are well looked after.

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  6. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    RIP Greg King..I loved the court report. Condolences to his family and friends..I too , heard Sarah Bradley say he was a newly diagnosed diabetic..It is probably best to wait for the coroners report on the cause of his death. Very sad and a great loss.

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  7. first time caller (384 comments) says:

    He was a great man. Fantastic personality and person who will be sorely missed by all who knew him.

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  8. SGA (959 comments) says:

    @DPF – Fair enough, you have “insider information”. More sad.

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  9. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    I find it hard to believe someone would commit suicide next to their car though?

    Could have been in his car, many suicides are committed in the car via a certain method that I don’t think is legal to discuss.

    I find David’s speculative post highly inappropriate and inconsiderate for the privacy that the family has requested. By stating that it is practically a suicide causes this thread to be filled with rumours and gossip which only detracts from the condolences that should be the only messages in such a thread.

    Edit: Just saw this now:

    [DPF: Sadly it was not natural causes. I'm definite]

    If this is the case, then you know something the rest of us don’t. Without a coroner’s report then it is no different from saying you’re definite about McDonald’s guilt before the verdict has been handed down.

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  10. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    This is an absolute tragedy for his family. I hope and pray he died from natural causes and not suicide. There is nothing as selfish in life, to do such a thing to those that love you, and who are left behind. If not natural causes…maybe he was too good an actor for his own good…RIP

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  11. Nookin (3,185 comments) says:

    Please lets not have an adversarial style postmortem quite yet!

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  12. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    People have their reasons, and we should not judge. Depression is unexplainable to those who have not been through it.

    I am sitting here like a stunned mullet and I didn’t even know him.

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  13. alex Masterley (1,501 comments) says:

    This is sad news.
    Greg King was the finest advocate of his generation.
    There are lots of wannabes out there but he definitely had the touch.
    Con va dios Greg.

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  14. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    Stunned to hear the news. A huge loss to his family, and to the legal profession.

    A great lawyer, fantastic raconteur, wonderful teacher of other lawyers, and all around good guy. A judge in the making if ever there was one. We will all miss his presence at the Defence Bar.

    My condolences to his family.

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  15. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    … and a silver lining. Phew!

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  16. krazykiwi (9,189 comments) says:

    My condolences to his family. I have journeyed with the family of close friend lost in probably similar tragic circumstances. The unanswerable questions don’t go away. I hope they have good people around them.

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  17. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    I don’t know whether he did or did not commit suicide. I don’t hold with the failure to discuss it though – I think our failure in NZ to discuss suicide (particularly at the time when it has the most impact) leaves it as a silent killer, and also means that people with deep depression or other issues often feel they’re alone. If the sheer volume of suicides were reported as suicides, and for each one there was a story that said “so many options, this person didn’t avail themselves of them” and all their friends came out and said “I wish I’d known” – that might be enough that some people would talk to their friends or go to a service that could help.

    Not saying it would have helped in this case, but saying that (from where I’m sitting anyway) one of the problems that leads to suicide is thinking that you’re the only one in that situation. If we were more open about it (not in a pejorative way – not saying “how could he do such a thing” and stepping on his memory, but in a way that says “I wish he’d just…”) might help to reduce our awful statistics.

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  18. finlay (1 comment) says:

    I sit here stunned at the loss of a great friend. I have had the privilege of knowing Greg since his varsity days and only have great things to say about the man,I just cant for the life of me get my head around the fact he is gone.All the love and deepest sympathy go to Catherine and the girls and to his Mum and Dad and brother at this horrible time.Love to you all Fin and Carol Torrance Dunedin

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  19. Belinda (128 comments) says:

    RIP Greg, what an absolute tragedy to lose such a talented caring man.
    One never knows what demons those who appear to have everything are fighting.

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  20. KH (694 comments) says:

    I do understand the responsibility on lawyers to defend their clients.
    And many have earned my respect for doing so well, even when they may have thought their client guilty.
    but lawyers responsibility does not extend to mis truth and deception.
    I saw Greg King on the TV telling the court that Ewen McDonald was an ordinary Kiwi bloke.
    We all learned later of the other convictions that showed Ewen was not at all ordinary.
    but Greg had known that info all the way through. He made his choices of what to say. I am not impressed.

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  21. KH (694 comments) says:

    PaulL @ 7.36
    Very good post.

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  22. Bed Rater (239 comments) says:

    I’m not sure how you reconcile your actions of conveying sympathies to his young family and friends, with then going off and announcing that you know it to be suicide. I know you want the scoop, but it’s disturbingly insensitive timing.

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  23. nasska (10,917 comments) says:

    Bed Rater

    It was publicly announced in the news that….”His death has been reported as non-suspicious and referred to the coroner”…..

    I doubt there would be seven adults in NZ who wouldn’t recognise that phrase as journalistic code for suicide.

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  24. Belinda (128 comments) says:

    One can still convey sympathies to his family, whether it’s suicide or not. I don’t find it insensitive to say it was suicide, it is what it is.

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  25. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    People have their reasons, and we should not judge.

    Yes we bloody well should, suicide affects the living, not the dead- and after seeing the consequences of this incredibly selfish act I think we should be making all sorts of judgements on it.

    Depression is unexplainable to those who have not been through it.

    Who hasn’t been through it? In my opinion, the people that build a legend of hopelessness around it are the ones contributing to the suicide statistics.

    It is the modern victim mentality bullshit from people that claim “to care” that cause most of the problems, depression doesn’t have to be the insurmountable issue that some like to think it is.

    Suicide is never a rational option.

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  26. PaulL (5,983 comments) says:

    @shunda: “suicide is never a rational option.”

    People aren’t always rational. The trick is to make it not be an irrational option either. That does require understanding the situation of those considering it.

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  27. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    People aren’t always rational. The trick is to make it not be an irrational option either. That does require understanding the situation of those considering it.

    I absolutely agree.

    We have to talk about suicide and get it out in the open, I reckon you were spot on the mark with your 7:36pm comment.

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  28. liarbors a joke (1,069 comments) says:

    “People have their reasons, and we should not judge.”

    “Yes we bloody well should,”

    No we shouldnt…people have reasons for committing suicide and who are we do judge those reasons.

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  29. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    No we shouldnt…people have reasons for committing suicide and who are we do judge those reasons.

    Interpretation: – Suicide is rational in certain circumstances.

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  30. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    Shunda barunda (2,303) Says:
    November 3rd, 2012 at 8:22 pm

    People have their reasons, and we should not judge.

    Yes we bloody well should, suicide affects the living, not the dead- and after seeing the consequences of this incredibly selfish act I think we should be making all sorts of judgements on it.

    Depression is unexplainable to those who have not been through it.

    Who hasn’t been through it? In my opinion, the people that build a legend of hopelessness around it are the ones contributing to the suicide statistics.

    It is the modern victim mentality bullshit from people that claim “to care” that cause most of the problems, depression doesn’t have to be the insurmountable issue that some like to think it is.

    Suicide is never a rational option.

    Firstly, if the King family is reading this – my sincerest condolences. I hope that should you need any support, that you will be willing to reach out to the public through the media.

    Shunda – it is very, VERY ironic to read you talking about what is rational and what is not. You believe that homosexuality is irrational. Most people believe it to be normal. You believe that believing in God is rational. I find that to be ridiculously retarded and irrational.

    If God is real, then He would not have made imperfect beings who are capable of making irrational decisions such as suicide. An all-knowing God would not have created a universe where 90% of people end up in Hell (random statistic, but the point is that a rational Creator would have made it so that zero percent of people go to Hell). It is not rational to create people knowing that they will end up in eternal torment.

    You are clearly an expert on depression, so I challenge you to go work in mental health, and see how many people you can logically convince you to simply get over their issues. Surely it is your responsibility as a Christian to love your neighbour and help them see ‘the way’. By not actively helping suicidal people, you are not carrying out your Christian duty to help the poor, the down-trodden, and various other people Jesus mentions in Matthew chapter five.

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  31. tvb (4,255 comments) says:

    Sadly F.E. he would not be made a Judge if the circumstances behind his tragic death are correct. He must have suffered from depression.

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  32. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    No we shouldnt…people have reasons for committing suicide and who are we do judge those reasons.

    We are the living, that’s who.

    We have a 12 year old boy living down the road from us, he found his old man hanging dead in the garage when he was 9 years old.

    This young fellow now himself has a high risk of suicide.

    He is an extremely troubled young man, his mother has abandoned him and life is a very difficult, bleak, uphill struggle.

    We have a right to judge all bloody right.

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  33. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    I don’t know the circumstances of Greg’s death, nor did I ever meet him.
    I do know from reading about him that he had a remarkable openness and ability to engage with others from every step in life.
    I wrote him a unsolicited letter of support some months ago and to my surprise received a very generous reply.
    Later I wrote apologetically to him with information about manufacturers and suppliers of the soles of the type that featured so prominently in the case he successfully ran a few months ago. A researcher had found it mid flight and we decided that it seemed best to send it on anyway even if Greg already had it within his armoury. Of course, as time would soon tell, he’d been abreast of that wave for some time.
    But if is unfortunately true that Greg may have taken his own life these words may reflect some thought…

    “Sad as it may seem, those that care for others can live outside themselves externalising what they may need, or feel that they need, to make their own lives feel complete.”

    Whatever the circumstances of Greg’s death might be he cast light into lots of people’s lives, for which I, at least, and I’m sure many others, are grateful.

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  34. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    Shunda – it is very, VERY ironic to read you talking about what is rational and what is not. You believe that homosexuality is irrational.

    No, I believe you are irrational.
    I believe homosexuality is a biological anomaly, just like the scientists do.

    Most people believe it to be normal. You believe that believing in God is rational. I find that to be ridiculously retarded and irrational.

    I find the statement: “ridiculously retarded” pretty irrational, you sure you want to do this? ;)

    If God is real, then He would not have made imperfect beings who are capable of making irrational decisions such as suicide.

    As far as I understand the doctrine, God made us perfect, the irrationality was our idea.

    An all-knowing God would not have created a universe where 90% of people end up in Hell (random statistic, but the point is that a rational Creator would have made it so that zero percent of people go to Hell). It is not rational to create people knowing that they will end up in eternal torment.

    You seem to be an expert on “all knowing gods”, who am I to judge ;)

    You are clearly an expert on depression, so I challenge you to go work in mental health, and see how many people you can logically convince you to simply get over their issues.

    What the hell are you on about?

    Surely it is your responsibility as a Christian to love your neighbour and help them see ‘the way’. By not actively helping suicidal people, you are not carrying out your Christian duty to help the poor, the down-trodden, and various other people Jesus mentions in Matthew chapter five.

    This is actually quite funny because my neighbor is currently here talking to my wife and I about helping her with her teenage kid and we are also discussing the boy down the street that I mentioned in my last post on this thread, my wife in particular makes sure she looks out for him and encourages him wherever possible.

    I hope this meets your stringent standards of Christian charity.

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  35. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    You’re a very weird attention seeker barunda, haven’t you got somewhere else to go?

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  36. Chuck Bird (4,773 comments) says:

    “Sadly F.E. he would not be made a Judge if the circumstances behind his tragic death are correct. He must have suffered from depression.”

    What do you base that theory on? You get some pretty hopeless judges.

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  37. Scott Chris (5,981 comments) says:

    Suicide is rational in certain circumstances.

    Yes it is. Whatever drove him to kill himself overrode his love of those close to him and the grief he knew he would cause in doing so.

    I suspect that the prospect of the sanctimonious and unperceptive moralizing of people like you wasn’t the last thing on his mind.

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  38. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    Most of us will suffer from bouts of depression throughout the course of our lives, brought about by any number of factors. It is how we deal with it that matters. Once (through events I could not control) I found myself in foreign territory, trapped, alone and completely penniless and weaping everyday in dispair at the hopelessness of my situation. I was living on the six floor story of a hotel looking at the ground everyday, thinking how easy it would be for a person of a weaker disposition to end it all. I was lucky. I had the fortitude and strength of character to resist the easy way out. Sadly, not all of us have it. No matter how much society debates the topic, the suicides that cannot be prevented are the ones that are pre-planned and well organised, usually by those of high intellect.

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  39. Bob R (1,357 comments) says:

    Incredibly shocking and sad news. I met King and his wife several years ago. Aside from his obvious passion and ability as a lawyer, he was just a thoroughly decent, warm and compassionate man. My thoughts are with his young family and loved ones.

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  40. tristanb (1,133 comments) says:

    Condolences to the family in what must be such an incredibly difficult time. (Although I trust they will not be reading sites like this.)

    I too have some misgivings about the blog post. And I apologise for getting off topic, but…

    “His death has been reported as non-suspicious and referred to the coroner, which of course is code for suicide.”

    If you know it’s a suicide by other sources, then fine. But that statement is not “code”. I hope DPF is saying it to pre-empt and deflate speculation in the comments, but I wonder if it should remain unsaid until there is an “official” statement.

    Anyone of us could drop dead in the bathroom tomorrow morning from a massive heart attack and cardiac arrest. If there was no sign of a struggle, and your wife finds you in your locked house when she gets home from work, the police could call it non-suspicious. It would definitely be referred to the coroner, and your body would go to a pathologist for an autopsy.

    “Non-suspicious” means that there are no signs or evidence of any foul play, that’s all. “Referral to the coroner” will happen in any unexpected death of a healthy person. Suicide is one possibility, and a common one, but there are other causes. It is not “code”.

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  41. Paul Marsden (990 comments) says:

    Actually tristanb (and without stating the insentive obvious), it is code

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  42. David Garrett (6,786 comments) says:

    I learned of Greg’s death earlier today. I was, as most have been, shocked and stunned. It seems a bit banal to say that the last time I saw him he seemed to want to have ” a sess”…who knows if he wanted to talk about something important? Because I was “off the piss” I did not stay. I wish I had.

    All I want to say is that Greg represented me without charge in my fight against the Law Society to get my practising certificate back. He knew I was not in a position to pay him. At a rough guess, he probably gave me $5,000 of his time when he knew I could not pay. We were nominally on opposite sides of the law and order debate. I respected him greatly, and I feel immensely for his wife and children.

    As someone who has “been there” and struggles with the black dog regularly, I have some understanding of the awful place he must have found himself. There but for the grace of God go I and countless others. RIP Greg.

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  43. Pete George (23,346 comments) says:

    SPINZ ‏@suicidenz
    Need to talk to someone? In NZ: 0508 828 865 (TAUTOKO), Lifeline 0800 543 354, Youthline 0800 376 633, Samaritans 0800 726 666

    Retweeted by Peter Dunne, the only MP I’ve seen mentioning the S word today. He also tweeted:

    Peter Dunne ‏@PeterDunneMP
    We will make progress in dealing with suicide when we have the courage to talk openly re issue that costs 500 Kiwis their lives each year.

    About twice as many suicides each year as road deaths.

    Regardless of the facts on Greg’s tragic death we need to try a different approach to dealing with suicide. 500 a year is far too many, we are failing to address this large number of tragedies. Media “code” and silence haven’t worked.

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  44. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    I understood that all sudden deaths were referred to the coroner. This is such a tragic loss, not only for his poor wife and little girls – for whom the loss is obviously greatest – but also for the legal fraternity of New Zealand. I feel gutted, as a lawyer, that I never had the opportunity to see Greg King in action. RIP, you were and are so respected Mr King.

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  45. Nostradamus (3,155 comments) says:

    Pete George:

    FFS – what has Peter Dunne got to do with this?

    Why couldn’t you just provide the relevant contact details for those in a dark place (if that was your intention) and leave it at that?

    I really don’t think this is the thread to be promoting Peter Dunne’s views.

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  46. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    Is the new Truth editor plagiarising Kiwiblog, or is it the other way round? This post has six sentences, five of which are word-for-word sentences over at Whaleoil. At least DPF posts the time he posts while Whale does not, so I can’t tell who is copying whom. So who is channelling whose sincere personal thoughts about Greg King’s death, or is cut-n-paste the new media? It was called plagiarism, if not attributed, when I was at uni.

    Kiwiblog & Whaleoil
    A The media are reporting that the well liked and top lawyer Greg King is dead.

    Whaleoil & Kiwiblog
    B He was one of , if not the most, respected criminal defence lawyers in NZ.

    Kiwiblog & Whaleoil
    C His death is a huge loss to the legal fraternity, and those who knew him well. And his family most of all.

    Whaleoil & Kiwiblog
    D His death has been reported as non-suspicious and referred to the coroner, which is the journalistic euphemism for suicide. I personally struggle with the concept that people kill themselves for whatever reason…it is tragic.

    Kiwiblog & Whaleoil
    E My thoughts go out to his wife with two young daughters.

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  47. Nostradamus (3,155 comments) says:

    iMP:

    Good to see you focusing on the important issues. Well done.

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  48. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    Sincerity at someones death would be nice, not just lazy cut n paste.

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  49. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    You’re a very weird attention seeker barunda, haven’t you got somewhere else to go?

    WTF?

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  50. Tom Jackson (2,532 comments) says:

    Suicide is never a rational option.

    Nor is staying alive.

    Simply put, there is no logically compelling reason that all persons should take heed of one way or another. People may have their individual reasons (and they can be mistaken), but there’s no such thing as “the” value of life per se, and thus poor Greg King can’t be accused of not recognizing it.

    If you’re searching for some ultimate reason to justify either staying alive or dying, there isn’t one. Human life is neither tragic nor comic. It simply is.

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  51. Nigel (516 comments) says:

    Condolences to his family & friends, what happened is never easy for those left behind who have lost the most and even though we all lose a little when a talent as his passes on prematurely, in the end the one who loses most is Greg.

    It is for that last reason I think Shunda should STFU & have some empathy for the family/friends Greg leaves behind & leave the issues he faces in his own life out of this conversation, we all know the consequences of what happened, but your own brand of distorted morality in my personal opinion actually contributes to suicide, as it’s my belief that the lack of empathy you show is interpreted by those in most danger as demonstrating how others don’t understand what is being gone through, when what is really needed is acceptance and understanding and the knowledge that you are not alone & it is worth carrying on with things to live for, not that you are being judged.

    To my way of thinking suicide as a bit like addiction, avoidance/recovery is not made easier because one needs to, but because one wants to & finding a way to transform that thought process is important.

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  52. Zapper (967 comments) says:

    RIP Greg King. Horrible news. Thanks to those above who have shared their own experiences of something like he must have gone through.

    This is an RIP thread so religion and politics is best left out of it. DPF made the call to identify this as suicide – I trust his judgement and reasons on that, we’re not talking about someone who would do this unconsidered.

    Sometimes things happen to people I have no connection to that seriously affect me, this is one of them. As David Garrett put it “There but for the grace of God go I and countless others”. Thanks David and others for what you’ve shared. Let’s not disrespect this thread.

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  53. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Excellent post Nigel.

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  54. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    It is for that last reason I think Shunda should STFU & have some empathy for the family/friends Greg leaves behind & leave the issues he faces in his own life out of this conversation, we all know the consequences of what happened, but your own brand of distorted morality in my personal opinion actually contributes to suicide, as it’s my belief that the lack of empathy you show is interpreted by those in most danger as demonstrating how others don’t understand what is being gone through, when what is really needed is acceptance and understanding and the knowledge that you are not alone & it is worth carrying on with things to live for, not that you are being judged.

    Wow!!

    There’s a contender for the longest sentence on Kiwiblog ever written.

    I think you are very ignorant.

    I have empathy for his family you dickhead, that is what motivated me to comment in the first place, I’ve seen what suicide does to the living.

    His family will be going through hell, and I can guarantee you his wife will and kids will have to deal with considerable anger toward him which will only make their grieving that much harder, suicide is an awful thing to afflict on anybody, let alone those that love you.

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  55. SPC (5,473 comments) says:

    iMP, possibly Kiwiblog and Whaleoil both receive things to release to the public – but neither copies from the other as such.

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  56. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    It may have been a calculated decision. Or it may have been a spontaneous act at a time of emotional desolation when he was out of his mind with stress.

    Who of us can say? Who of us is fit to judge?

    Those who condemn at a time like this are not, in my view, fully human.

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  57. noskire (835 comments) says:

    RIP Greg King – what a terrible tragedy for you and your family. I am totally shocked.

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  58. Reid (16,111 comments) says:

    Those who condemn…

    John, no-one has.

    Shunda has had this 9 year old top of mind throughout this thread. All his comments tonight seem to reflect that.

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  59. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    SPC, I don’t mean any disrespect to Greg, but Kiwi and Whale’s blogs are identical, they even have the same typographical and grammatical errors; so one is directly cut and pasting the other.

    I just find that a bit disrespectful if you’re gonna post a ‘personal’ post with sentiments on someone’s undefined death. It is not sincere.

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  60. SPC (5,473 comments) says:

    They would have consent to use the same source material, and maybe each others.

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  61. SPC (5,473 comments) says:

    Probably a good lesson for a new editor to learn though.

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  62. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    Shunda has had this 9 year old top of mind throughout this thread. All his comments tonight seem to reflect that.

    Exactly, all I know about this guy is that he has ended his life (assuming that is correct) and his wife and kids have to somehow make sense of his decision, I am relating it to what I have seen happen to kids in this circumstance.

    The faux outrage shown here is a bit ridiculous, this is Kiwiblog, not his wife’s facebook page.

    Suicide is a terrible ordeal for anyone unfortunate enough to have to deal with it, you wouldn’t wish such grief on your worst enemy.

    It seems some here think they have a monopoly on grief and the wider issues that suicide brings.

    Get over yourselves.

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  63. noskire (835 comments) says:

    Fuck it guys. A guy has just lost his life. A family has lost a father, husband etc. Stop fucking piddling in the paddling pool.

    I’m sure many readers of this blog are going through the same depressive elements that have lead Greg to take his own life. And all respects and condolences to Greg’s family. Show some fucking respect.

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  64. noskire (835 comments) says:

    And sorry about the swearing.

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  65. Lani (1 comment) says:

    I cant believe Greg King’s gone… I cried tonight whilst watching the news. I’m heartbroken for his amazing wife and beautiful girls. Greg didn’t commit suicide, he loved his family and was too head strong to take his own life.

    To all you disrespectful DICKHEADS out there, piss off and stop making up stories about someone you didn’t have the pleasure of knowing!

    [DPF: My condolences for your loss, you obviously knew Greg well. I would note that NBR have reported that it was suicide also – http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/wellington-police-investigating-sudden-death-high-profile-lawyer-greg-king-ck-131788

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  66. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    Fuck it guys. A guy has just lost his life. A family has lost a father, husband etc. Stop fucking piddling in the paddling pool.

    No body is doing anything of the sort.

    I’m sure many readers of this blog are going through the same depressive elements that have lead Greg to take his own life. And all respects and condolences to Greg’s family. Show some fucking respect.

    You show some fucking respect by accepting there is a spectrum of grief and reaction to such tragic circumstances.

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  67. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    I wish this was just a condolences page..There is a lot of judgement , assumption , opinion going on. It is likely that there is a link between out of control Diabetes and depression..Diabetic symptoms are sometimes mistaken for drunkenness..In my experience , many people have great difficulty coming to terms with a serious diagnosis and many take a long time to learn how to manage a newly acquired serious condition. Rip Greg King.

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  68. Pete George (23,346 comments) says:

    Nostradamus at 11.11 pm – I considered carefully before mentioning him. I think it is important to promote his views, one of his responsibiolities as Associate Minister of Health is suicide. That he is pushing for changes in how we deal with suicide is significant.

    He recently summarised NZ suicide prevention strategies in a speech in Australia – http://www.beehive.govt.nz/speech/australian-national-suicide-prevention-conference – that outlined what Government is doing but also emphasised it is up to families and communities to do what they can.

    It’s very difficult, particularly because it’s been a taboo subject.

    I presume DPF has very good reasons for openly suggesting suicide in this case. It’s not always obvious until investigated, hence media have to be cautious and they follow agreed guidelines.

    Two years ago a member of my family died suddenly. He was a drug addict and was found with a syringe still in his arm. Some people jumped to conclusions saying it was suicide, but the coroner found that it was accidental, the facts clearly support this.

    Someone I knew very well for a long time told me they had seriously considered suicide, I knew they had problems but there was no indication until then they had been considering killing themselves. I think it’s common for those thinking of suicide to keep it entirely to themselves, and I have no idea what signs to look for. In some cases there is no sign at all, so there is nothing family and friends could have done.

    Another family member talked openly of considering suicide when their cancer became a major burden and the outcome was inevitable. Sensible changes on euthanasia would lower suicide statistics, although probably not much.

    Key areas that need addressing are (all of our) attitudes to mental illness, how mental illness is treated, and alcohol and drug abuse. The only way to deal with these things is by being open about them.

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  69. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    Type 1 diabetes is lethal and difficult to manage I am told. With a critical need to be managed so who knows what role that has played until the coroner’s report is complete.
    I read the story of Greg’s dad being linked to tuwharetoa and working at the prison farm Hautu where Arthur Alan Thomas was released from after his pardon by Royal Prerogative. According to the article that was a topic of conversation in the King family. It’s possible that the King family at that time lived in a ‘prison’ village or certainly socialised there. Whatever the case, the village or living nearby, is a long way for a bare foot boy to the Privy Council, a long way from being an advocate and practitioner of the Law. Some men are born to be rangatira others become rangatira because of the lives they lead, their vision, what drives them and their commitment to others. Which ever it was in Greg’s case a cloak of feathers warms the memory of him and traces the steps of his significant life.
    Haera Ra Rangatira.

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  70. KH (694 comments) says:

    Paul says it very well. I quote in part.
    PaulL@7.36pm
    ” …….. If the sheer volume of suicides were reported as suicides, and for each one there was a story that said “so many options, this person didn’t avail themselves of them” and all their friends came out and said “I wish I’d known” – that might be enough that some people would talk to their friends or go to a service that could help…….”
    and
    “…………. one of the problems that leads to suicide is thinking that you’re the only one in that situation. If we were more open about it (not in a pejorative way – not saying “how could he do such a thing” and stepping on his memory, but in a way that says “I wish he’d just…”) might help to reduce our awful statistics.”
    The thing about suicide is that work on it has the best result you can get in the health service.
    If you can get someone through a bad few days, there can be many decades of good life to follow.
    It is quite possible to change the thinking of society and of individuals. The work is being done. We can’t win them all, but if more people had the mindset that ‘There are actually other options’ fewer would die prematurely.

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  71. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    Yes, this is sad. I think that DPF has done his homework and the suggestion of suicide is probably correct. He was found down the end of a one way road to nowhere (Dungarvan Rd) : http://maps.google.co.nz/maps?oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&q=Dungarvan+Road+Newlands&um=1&ie=UTF-8&hq=&hnear=0x6d38ac301dfc98dd:0x4849a40d8516929f,Dungarvan+Rd,+Newlands,+Wellington+6037&gl=nz&sa=X&ei=dXGVUIfmLIitiQer2YGoDA&ved=0CCMQ8gEwAA

    If you go into street view, you can see that the end of the road is pretty vacant. That is not the place to suddenly have a random heart attack.

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  72. Pete George (23,346 comments) says:

    Dom Post goes a step further (for MSM):

    It is believed King took his own life. Detective Inspector Paul Basham said police did not believe King’s death was suspicious and the matter had been referred to the coroner.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/7904445/Lawyer-Greg-King-found-dead

    Very sad, but if the cause is obvious it should not be suppressed.

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  73. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    Yeah, it raises some interesting questions. Suicide is a form of homicide. What would Greg have to say in his defence, either to a court of law, or to his wife and kids? Usually having children in your care is an incentive to keep going and not to succumb.

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  74. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    FFS Pete
    Nothing is being fucking suppressed – the matter has been reported to the Coroner who will make the decision on the cause of death and report back after the autopsy – the police do not report the cause of death to the fucking newspapers.

    This is all a formality but that’s the way its done.

    In a couple of days it will be reported that this poor bugger killed himself but there are procedures to go through which act as safe guards.

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  75. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Kent
    Suicide is a form of homicide.What would Greg have to say in his defence…/

    He’d probably suggest firstly that you are a giant twat

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  76. Viking2 (11,283 comments) says:

    Read this and its somewhat obvious that King needed help. But, who approached him, who determined his workload and why is a person allowed to have such a workload. Most of the load can be monitored by the Law society if they felt so inclined.
    Some people need protecting from themselves when it comes to work and stress. Just a thought.
    Enlightening read.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/7903889/The-friend-of-the-friendless

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  77. Sofia (830 comments) says:

    Peter Dunne, in a recent speech to the Australian National Suicide Prevention Conference –

    There is no denying that preventing suicide is a ‘thorny issue’ and one of the toughest endeavours a country must undertake.
    There is no ‘quick fix’, no ‘one size fits all solution’.
    It might be complex and challenging, but this provides compelling reasons to get involved and find solutions.
    As a government, we owe it to our people to address this matter wholeheartedly and with absolute determination and commitment.
    As family members, we owe it to our parents, brothers, sisters, children, and grandparents to offer a helping hand if we see people struggling.

    The aim would be to hopefully reduce the 500 suicides a year, a number about twice the road death-toll.

    But, just as road safety campaigns hopefully reduce serious injury as well as deaths, how many near suicides – people self-medicating with alcohol and other drugs, or actually prescribed anti-depressants – would be better off also through any mental health campaign. Actual suicides are the visible part of the iceberg.

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  78. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    To Paul East at 9.21am, suicide in our society until 50 or so years ago was considered a crime and people who failed were often prosecuted: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suicide_Act_1961. You can bet your bottom dollar that those closest to him right now are asking the questions: Why? Why? Why?

    It is a tragedy that Greg King is dead, but it is/would be an even bigger tragedy if it was due to suicide. When you are father and breadwinner of a young family, you really do need to think about the lives of those closest to you before doing anything drastic to yourself.

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  79. iMP (2,345 comments) says:

    Kent, sometimes depression is so overwhelming it overshadows such interests, even love for others (let alone self). It is a tragic tragic strong disease.

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  80. Pauleastbay (5,035 comments) says:

    Kent @ 9.38am

    Oh nevermind….

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  81. morris (53 comments) says:

    Radio Live just reported the death was from complications from diabetes.

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  82. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    When you are father and breadwinner of a young family, you really do need to think about the lives of those closest to you before doing anything drastic to yourself.

    And those stories are the ones that need to be told.

    The children of a father that kills himself are much more likely to do the same at some point, if people new that, it would almost certainly stop a few.

    The guy I knew that killed himself would never have done it if he knew his 9 year old boy was going to find him hanging in the shed, I know he wouldn’t have.

    To a family, it is harder to deal with than if they were murdered, it is such an awful thing to afflict on those that love you.

    It’s time to start telling some heart breaking stories, this ‘cover it up’ bullshit has got to stop.

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  83. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    iMP, yes, I know. It is tragic that in this case it appears to have been overwhelming.

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  84. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    ‘morris (51) Says:
    November 4th, 2012 at 9:47 am
    Radio Live just reported the death was from complications from diabetes.’

    ………..

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  85. morris (53 comments) says:

    Yes I know but it is what they reported at the 9.30 news update.

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  86. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    Not surprising morris.
    I just repeated it to slow down some of the character autopsies going on.
    Type 1 is apparently a very mean monkey. Whilst also Greg had been open about lawyers and bottles – a no go place for those with type 1, but human enough.

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  87. mikenmild (11,246 comments) says:

    I think it is a sad reflection on some of the Kiwibloggers that this thread has become a debate about suicide. Please take that debate somewhere else and do please confine this thread, at least, to thoughts about Greg King, who does not need to be defined by the manner of his death. There is a thread about him because of the remarkable way he lived a life.

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  88. David Garrett (6,786 comments) says:

    Crikey…agreeing with Mikey twice in two days..

    PEB: Well said also.

    Kent: Unless you have suffered from the the black dog yourself – in the clinical sense, not just been a bit down about how your life is going – STFU. And if you have, and you are still here, then you should thank, in addition to your great strength of character, a good dose of luck and even bigger doses of modern medicine.

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  89. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    Please take that debate somewhere else and do please confine this thread, at least, to thoughts about Greg King, who does not need to be defined by the manner of his death.

    Unfortunately, he will always be defined by his death, that is the sad result of suicide (if indeed it actually was suicide).

    There is a thread about him because of the remarkable way he lived a life.

    No, there is a thread about him because of the way he ended his life, DPF specifically mentioned suicide.

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  90. Sofia (830 comments) says:

    mikenmild – There is a thread about him because of the remarkable way he lived a life.
    ___________

    I would respectfully suggest this thread is because his remarkable life has ended
    Obviously, no death, at this moment no thread.
    One could also consider the effect it may have on someone who is obliged to defend a person they know is guilty. At what cost is our legal system as the adversary performance it has become?

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  91. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    David at 10.27 am, DPF mentioned that it was suicide in the opening post and therefore it can be expected to define the comments to a certain extent. Yeah, and my life has been pretty much defined by the black dog, so this topic is right down my alley.

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  92. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    David Garrett, resident blog cop, turns up right on cue.

    Why don’t you STFU and get off your high horse, your faux outrage is nauseating.

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  93. David Garrett (6,786 comments) says:

    Kent: In that case, I stand corrected. And if “Kent Parker” is you real name, you are doubly courageous.

    For myself, I would probably not have survived the past two years were it not for my much loved children. But having said that, I sure as hell am not going to judge Greg, if indeed he did take his life, and diabetes didnt do it for him.

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  94. stoliver (16 comments) says:

    A New Zealander who made a difference, took part as a lawyer and a citizen, a loss for all of us.

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  95. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    David, yeah, concur. I understand people not wanting to discuss the whole suicide issue a day after the tragedy. One can only hope that this doesn’t lead to the issue not being discussed at all.

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  96. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    You’re a little nauseating yourself shunda.
    On one of the many occasions I unfortunately dwelt with suicide I needed to put the flaming body out and couldn’t bring myself to pointedly look. I look now and see you without the dignity of being able to let things rest in their own good time.
    I don’t know what happened to Greg King even if he did take his own life, or what part the serious illness diabetes played, but I’m for celebrating him – a giant among us.

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  97. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    You’re a little nauseating yourself shunda.

    Oh good grief, another one.

    On one of the many occasions I unfortunately dwelt with suicide I needed to put the flaming body out and couldn’t bring myself to pointedly look. I look now and see you without the dignity of being able to let things rest in their own good time.

    This is a fucking witch hunt.

    That’s what is actually going on here, people are unsure how to feel/react so they immediately fall into scapegoating behavior and ‘hunt down’ those that are seen not to care enough.

    For goodness sake get over yourselves and grow up.

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  98. David Garrett (6,786 comments) says:

    Put your real name out there “Shunda” or fuck off.

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  99. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    mikenmild (5,376) Says:
    November 4th, 2012 at 10:12 am

    I think it is a sad reflection on some of the Kiwibloggers that this thread has become a debate about suicide.

    If what Radio Live is reporting is correct, and that it was death due to diabetes, then David Farrar is to blame for strongly pointing out that he knew it was suicide. First in the original post:

    His death has been reported as non-suspicious and referred to the coroner, which of course is code for suicide.

    Then further when shutting someone down who suggested that we should not say what it is and isn’t without fully knowing the facts:

    SGA (107) Says:
    November 3rd, 2012 at 6:02 pm

    DPF – he’s also been struggling with diabetes. You might be right, but not so fast on the suicide.

    [DPF: Sadly it was not natural causes. I'm definite.]

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  100. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    Put your real name out there “Shunda” or fuck off.

    Are you fucking serious?

    You really are a contemptible little prick aren’t you.

    Grow the fuck up.

    [DPF: Warning - tone it down, or take a break]

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  101. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    Jimmy, with the current state of play, even if it is known to be suicide, the chances of it being reported as such in a manner that would totally convince the most skeptical, is not likely.

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  102. Jimmy Smits (246 comments) says:

    He admitted to the New Zealand Herald this year that he drank far too much and that drinking helped him do his job.

    “Vampires and blood; alcohol and lawyers. It’s an age-old combination. It’s got me through many a sleepless night.”

    For those who are saying the suicide was irrational, overdrinking is known to be a factor in causing mental illness. I would not be surprised if it negatively impacted him psychologically and disabled him from being able to think rationally. Many of my friends who are mentally unstable are ‘drug’ abusers.

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  103. Nigel (516 comments) says:

    I know this thread is about the tragedy of Greg King’s passing, but I have to say my hat goes off to David Garrett, this is a very sensitive subject and your posts have been on the money, I seriously respect the guts you’ve shown to open up as you have.

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  104. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    For those who are saying the suicide was irrational, overdrinking is known to be a factor in causing mental illness. I would not be surprised if it negatively impacted him psychologically and disabled him from being able to think rationally. Many of my friends who are mentally unstable are ‘drug’ abusers.

    That’s why I think it has to be talked about more openly Jimmy. When we hide it away, I believe we are helping to create the view of a very dark lonely corner that actually appeals to those in a state of depression, they fall into this void where no one else seems to be.

    By talking about the consequences on the living, we can possibly trigger more positive thoughts in a depressed individual, appealing to a basic biological desire to protect others they care about from harm, it won’t work for everyone, but it might work for people with close loved ones.

    Basically I think it is about placing more distance between a state of depression and actually taking your own life, placing more ‘steps’ in the way so an individual has more chances to get off that path and get on the path to recovery.

    I know for myself, thinking of my children’s future has arrested certain thoughts, I think also contemplating the 3 suicides I have knowledge of helps to understand the beginnings of those seemingly one way tracks.

    It’s a terrible, terrible, thing, and whatever is being done to stop it now doesn’t appear to be working, we have to try a new approach.

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  105. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    [DPF: Warning - tone it down, or take a break]

    I apologize for my language.

    I found it really insulting that certain individuals were so quick to judge my motives to comment, I felt the need to hit back and defend myself.

    I am sorry for allowing myself to get wound up, it is a subject that I think many of us have strong emotions over.

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  106. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    I really hoped against hope that it was a complication from diabetes, but from what I’ve just heard, it sounds like it was definitely suicide. Such a terrible, terrible shame.

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  107. Shunda barunda (2,972 comments) says:

    An apology to David Garrett.

    David, I just read your 9:57pm comment from yesterday, I had no idea you knew this man personally and in that regard I understand your anger and I apologize profusely.

    For some reason I just didn’t expect people commenting here to be closely acquainted with Mr King and I thought a more generic discussion on suicide was appropriate.

    I now realize it wasn’t and I am really very sorry for any anguish I caused you or anyone else that knew Mr King.

    Please accept my apology.

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  108. David Garrett (6,786 comments) says:

    Shunda: Apology accepted. It takes a big person to apologize, especially publicly.

    And for others…from information available to me, if it is correct, it was sadly certainly suicide. RIP again Greg.

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  109. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    He didn’t know how to say no to helping people. Others never realise how much their demands drain people, especially criminals who are often all about ‘me, me, me’. Its called running on empty. NZ has lost one of its greatest. We met only a few times but had mutual friends and how far this guy went for clients, both as a lawyer and human being was phenomenal. The people judging him for suicide aren’t worth the dirt on his shoe. As someone else said I hope the kaupapa Greg laid out for problem solving courts will be taken up and completed. He rocked boats, he was fiercely honest, he did not hold with the idea Maori could eventually set up their own successful ways to run justice systems based on foreign indigenous initiatives that he observed to be big fails. He went looking for what works regardless of the ethnic source. This had to make him a renegade in the Maori legal community. His intellect was above and beyond, his drive and quest to improve life for the underdog unmatched.

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  110. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Well said, Sandy.

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  111. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    MSM has removed suicide references. Replaced it with “Coroner Wallace Bain, who has imposed restrictions surrounding the reporting of the case.”

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  112. Whaleoil (766 comments) says:

    And the only types of death that coroners prevent anyone speaking about is suicide…so go figure.

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  113. tvb (4,255 comments) says:

    I very much doubt that diabetes will explain his state of mind. I suspect Greg King was fighting depression for years, kept much of it hidden and that was the cause of his problems. He strikes me as a manic depressive, who did difficult work and found it at times overwhelming. A tragic loss especially for his family.

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  114. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    Laidir should be deleted, its likely his brand of hate mongering contributed to Kings demise. He obviously missed the links to Dom Post articles etc citing suicide per sources high in the legal profession. I really hope for your conscience Laidir you were not one of the many who sent King hate mail just because he did his job. Which is putting on the best defense. And if you were I hope you have just learnt a bit about how the violent hateful nature of NZ society as modeled by yourself contributes to our high suicide rates. Public life involves stress as you say… and shouldering criticism, but the hate you channel straight from your inner hellzone is over the line.

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  115. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    I have to say that Laidir’s comment at 2.45pm is one of the dumbest that I have read in a while (Luc’s excepted, of course). It shows no understanding of the role of defence lawyers, while casting doubt on Greg’s genuine and deserved reputation.

    Greg was genuinely liked and valued by the profession. He really was an outstanding lawyer, as well as having an understanding of the reasons why we have a Defence Bar and not just seeing it as a job.

    The viciousness of the criticism directed at Greg (and other defence lawyers, if I may say) was undeserved and ill-informed, but the man is just recently dead, his family is bereaved and we lawyers have lost a valued and respected colleague. This is a time for remembering the best about him and I, for one, choose to do just that.

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  116. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    Laidir seems to be a young cocky girl from Fielding per her f/b. Therefore living on high alert for a Ewen in the bushes. Nuff said.

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  117. jamee (1 comment) says:

    How misinformed Laidir’s comment is… this person obviously has no understanding of the obligations of a lawyer. Read the lawyers conduct and client care rules and get a grip. As for all this speculation, it is plain disrespectful for his family and unnecessarily damaging for the reputation of a man whose death is a huge loss to the legal profession.

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  118. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    Sandy, people in Feilding aren’t generally that stupid. I haven’t met a single person in Feilding who held any animosity towards Greg King. People are smart enough enough to know he was doing his job, and doing it well. Laidir, you’re not a lawyer – you have no idea what you do and don’t do in Court. Easy to judge when you know next to nothing about that which you’re professing an opinion upon.

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  119. John Ansell (874 comments) says:

    The blogosphere attracts some cruel types, doesn’t it? I had Shunda in that category, but applaud him for apologising.

    Whatever the cause, Greg King’s sudden death has affected people like few others in recent times. Rod Donald’s would be another where you can remember where you were when you heard the news.

    That is a measure of the impact the man made.

    The stress on him defending hated criminals must have been intense. Not just the intellectual and adversarial battle, but the crisis of conscience that must surely accompany every decision to go into bat for a Clayton Weatherston or a Peter Howse or a Ewen McDonald.

    Add into the mix public condemnation and a serious illness, and I can well imagine his mind could have overflowed with a toxic brew of negativity to the point where any kind of relief would have seemed better than none.

    You’re not yourself at times like this. Normal perspective goes out the window as you scream for relief from the pain. I define depression as ‘one thought too many’ after one crisis too many. At least that’s how it was for me.

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  120. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    Clik on her name Minnie, takes you to her business with a link to her f/b in a post. Fieldingite for sure I’m afraid

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  121. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    Clik on her name Minnie, takes you to her business with a link to her f/b in a post. Fieldingite for sure I’m afraid. Yes John, it’s a lot of pressure, and we Kiwis just think you should tough it out. You just wouldn’t see it coming, only in hindsight… when it is someone so looked up to.

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  122. Belinda (128 comments) says:

    I agree with an earlier poster that Greg was possibly bipolar.
    To most of us he appeared a huge over- achiever but no doubt he set his sights higher than most of us and still
    did not consider his life a success.
    His successes were greater than most of us, maybe his demons were bigger too.

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  123. Hope Taylor (2 comments) says:

    I sent an email to Greg prior to the Scott Guy murder trial…I told Greg that his superior skill as an eminent lawyer would not be enough to win Ewen McDonald his freedom. After the case, I felt compelled to write again and told Greg he was the only reason McDonald wasn’t convicted. To my surprise Greg replied and thanked me for being humble. He said that things aren’t always what they seem…How prophetic. How true. Whenever the black dog sits on my shoulders taunting me, I will remember the kindness of Greg King, and how his picture perfect life, his family, and his status wasn’t enough to keep him alive. I will.

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  124. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    the crisis of conscience that must surely accompany every decision to go into bat for a Clayton Weatherston or a Peter Howse or a Ewen McDonald

    I can say that, from my perspective, I have never had a crisis of conscience when it came to defending a person charged with any sort of offence.  I very much doubt Greg had any such issues either, but I didn’t know him nearly well enough (and not recently) to speculate on that.  

    That is not to say that whether he may or may not had other issues within himself concerning his work.  Again, I just don’t know, but I just very much doubt that it would have at any time been a crisis of conscience over representing a client or clients.

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  125. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    There was nothing wrong with his defense of Weatherston. Provocation has been used, successfully, as a defense for a great many vile crimes committed by women. (It still is, for women). The only “crisis of conscience” should be with those who changed the law after a trial by media.

    I think Greg King knew a bit more about the appropriate defense than any KB commenter and he had more integrity than those who distorted the law in a knee jerk appeal to the sentiments of an ignorant public.

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  126. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    I think Greg King knew a bit more about the appropriate defense than any KB commenter

    Speak for yourself…

    Or do you mean ‘more about the appropriate defence as it applied to the specifics of the Weatherstone trial‘?  That would be more correct.

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  127. Zapper (967 comments) says:

    Completely agree Kea. No law should have been changed. I believe he (Weatherston) misused the provocation defence, but he was found guilty regardless. The system worked. Greg King did as he was instructed by his client. I’m no lawyer, but I don’t think you can refuse.

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  128. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Sorry F E Smith, I overlooked the implied slight, but actually I was supporting your post. And no, I meant it the way I wrote it, but did not intend to include other lawyers who may be readers.

    Mr Zapper is a smart man. The defence did not work, so there was no need to change the law. The only reason it was changed was political, not legal. Even if it did work, what sort of country is it that changes the law to remove a defendants defence ! It assumes the person is guilty by accusation. Even China allows some kind of defence.

    (Probably more appropriate to take further comments to General Debate.)

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  129. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    Cheers, Kea. Also appreciate the supporting opinion re Greg.

    I actually completely disagree with Zapper re Weatherstone misusing the defence, as I have said on other threads. The point you make, however, re the change being political and not legal is, in my view, exactly right.

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  130. Zapper (967 comments) says:

    Do you mean it wasn’t misused in that it was the only legitimate defence? I guess I agree with that, if he wanted to defend the charges, that was the path he had to go down. If he was found not guilty based on the fact that Sophie was ***** (I won’t say what I know about Sophie), then there would be a problem. He wasn’t. The system worked. Why change it? Purely an emotional/political decision.

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  131. Anthony (785 comments) says:

    Why wouldn’t getting off someone so obviously guilty as Ewen McDonald not cause a crisis of conscience? The Police witness stuffed up the dive boot evidence which shows someone didn’t so their job properly so I don’t blame Grey King for the verdict, but if lawyers don’t suffer any twinges of guilt over such verdicts then the lawyer jokes must be true?

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  132. Zapper (967 comments) says:

    I don’t know ANthony. In my job which has far fewer ramifications, my crisis of conscience occurs when I don’t do my job properly.

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  133. David Garrett (6,786 comments) says:

    Well, FWIW chaps, I talked to Greg about the Mcdonald verdict..he said in no uncertain terms that in his view McDonald was innocent…the lawyers and others here with some understanding of legal issues will know that “innocent” and “not guilty” are very different concepts…I dunno…that’s what the man told me…

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  134. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    ‘Why wouldn’t getting off someone so obviously guilty as Ewen McDonald not cause a crisis of conscience?’

    Earth to mars.

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  135. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    Anthony, ok you convinced me………….. Once enough facts come out to indicate guilt, the lawyer should walk out and the entire legal profession should refuse to deal with the defendant.

    That will be the end of the whole matter and the accused can walk free, as no trial can proceed in those circumstances.

    Your a genius.

    But one small point………. how will the lawyer know the client is guilty? Before, after, during, the trial ?

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  136. Sandy (47 comments) says:

    I too gathered he thought Maccers not guilty, from a comment and stance he had when the subject cropped up at the debate at the law school some 2-3 months ago David. Thought it was odd at the time given the case in the round. Wonder if he got somehow manipulated that time.

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  137. joana (1,983 comments) says:

    Great posts Nostalgia-NZ thanks.

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  138. jonnycomelately (18 comments) says:

    [DPF: deleted as comment in breach of the Coroners Act]

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  139. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    Stuff are now reporting the death as “suspected suicide”, paragraph 3: http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/7903889/Greg-King-Friend-of-the-friendless

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  140. Anthony (785 comments) says:

    Well I guess the tactic defence lawyers use to avoid a crisis of conscience is to try to believe their client is innocent despite any evidence that they are guilty. I don’t expect them to not do their job – just sayin letting a guilty man walk could cause a crisis of conscience.

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  141. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    Well I guess the tactic defence lawyers use to avoid a crisis of conscience is to try to believe their client is innocent despite any evidence that they are guilty.

    Nope, totally wrong.  Very happy to defend someone that I know to be guilty.  I have no problem with it. I am sure that Greg had no problem with it.  I doubt you will find many defence lawyers who have an issue with it.  

    just sayin letting a guilty man walk could cause a crisis of conscience.

    I can’t see why it should.  If a guilty person (women commit crimes as well, after all) is acquitted at trial or has a the case against them dismissed then it is either a failure of the proseucting authority, or else there is simply insufficient evidence to prove their guilt.  Simple.  As Zapper said, it is not doing my job properly that gives us more cause for concern, not the guilt of the client.  Although we will get a little annoyed if someone that we really believe to be innocent is convicted.  That is because we will believe that we haven’t done our job well if that happens.

    Zapper,

    Do you mean it wasn’t misused in that it was the only legitimate defence?

    No, it wasn’t misused because a judge of the High Court considered the evidence in favour of the defenc of provocation and decided that there was sufficient evidence to allow it to go before a jury.  If there was not sufficient evidence then it was the job of the judge to not allow it to go before the jury.  So there was a medical basis for the defence, not just a grasping of straws.  The question for the jury was whether the medical evidence was sufficient for the jury to acquit, and of course they quite rightly found that the medical evidence was not sufficient for the defence of provocation to have been made out.

    I talked to Greg about the Mcdonald verdict..he said in no uncertain terms that in his view McDonald was innocent…the lawyers and others here with some understanding of legal issues will know that “innocent” and “not guilty” are very different concepts…I dunno…that’s what the man told me…

    Thanks for telling us that, David.  It is very telling that Greg should say that.  We at the defence bar are not so deluded as to rely on the old ‘innocence until proven guilty’ fiction.  If we think that a person is innocent then we mean actually innocent, not just not proven guilty.

    Now, many will criticise Greg for such a postion, given the amount of people who belive McDonald to be guilty.  But, and this is the strongest argument there is against the use of previous offences as a form of proving a current charge, it is entirely possible that McDonald engaged in the petty acts that he pleaded guilty to  without him at all being guilty of the murder.  It doesn’t even mean that he is more than likely to have committed the murder.  So if Greg thought that McDonald was innocent, then I think that says a lot about the case.

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  142. Anthony (785 comments) says:

    Come on FE Smith – those acts said a lot about McDonald’s character! So some other unknown person just turned up at 5am in the morning and shot Scott Guy? Now that seems far more difficult to believe!

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  143. Kent Parker (449 comments) says:

    F E Smith, I take umbrage to Greg’s comment that McDonald is just a normal kiwi bloke: http://tvnz.co.nz/national-news/ewen-macdonald-just-kiwi-bloke-lawyer-4960848 . To me that is a gross distortion of the reality that is Ewan McDonald, who clearly has deep and disturbing issues.

    This is a slur against all kiwi blokes everywhere, AND runs absolutely counter to the evidence, which should be clear to everyone including Greg King. Lawyers arguments should have at least some basis on evidence and should not be so pie in the sky. If Greg thought McDonald was innocent, then that probably says a lot about Greg. He is recorded as previously stating that he did not bother to determine whether or not a client was innocent or guilty and just argued the law. Maybe as Anthony suggests, he started to get too involved in his clients and couldn’t separate work from life. It is sad and I have sympathy for his young family but now he is gone.

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  144. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    “So some other unknown person just turned up at 5am in the morning and shot Scott Guy? Now that seems far more difficult to believe!”

    How do you know they’re unknown? The killer – assuming it’s not McDonald – might have several convictions for violence. He might have killed previously. You simply wouldn’t know because you have excluded that possibility with your narrow focus on McDonald. A better question is: what were the chances that police would focus on McDonald as their prime suspect, given his prior criminal acts? Almost 100%, I’d say…given that level of attention, I wouldn’t be surprised if police overlooked some things. Indeed, they didn’t properly re-enact the events of that morning.

    “In February this year Mr Jackson and Detective Laurie Howell returned to the street to conduct some timing experiments.

    It took Mr Howell 3 minutes 44 seconds to bike between the two houses.

    He then walked the 1.47 km in 12 mins 4 secs.

    Defence lawyer Greg King asked if Mr Howell carrying three puppies and a shot gun.

    Mr Jackson said he was not, and that the experiment took place at 11.36am in the summer, not in the dark.

    They had not tried to take the bike from the garage or return it afterwards.

    Mr King also asked if Mr Jackson had found any evidence of a bike being used.

    ‘I didn’t find anything to suggest a bicycle was there,’ Mr Jackson said.”

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/manawatu-standard/news/7128537/Jury-shown-Macdonald-confession

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  145. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    More difficult to believe than the fact EM was at home and turned off his alarm at the time. More difficult to believe than the local p freak burglar who had access to a shotgun was out and about that morning. The a cigarette packet of the same type found in the driveway was the same as those stolen in a recent burglary in the area. That the shoe print partially captured in blood by the body was two sizes larger than MacDonald’s size – and a list that goes on and adds weight to a proposition that EM should never have been charged because there was insufficient clear evidence of his guilt.

    Just because you form an opinion based on what type of character one of Greg’s client’s had, does not a crime make, or a lesser lawyer or man of Greg. People that know significantly more about the case than you do found EM not guilty. Frankly, you’re coming across as very dim by trying to link your prejudices against EM to Greg King. But of course others from the Foxton area have accepted in this thread that Greg did a very good job in that case, they don’t pretend to some how know more than the evidence in total as you clearly do. Comparing your presumptions with the mind of the late Greg King you present as fidgety, even mindless. Others of his own profession have said he was a teacher, one of the best legal advocates and that is what he will be remembered for long after you have crept away. But most surprisingly to me anyway is that the man is not even buried and you want to stir in the memory of his life, perhaps you are merely jealous and if that is the case how unfortunate for you. Greg would no doubt have understood a character type that is negative, and wishes to bring attention upon themselves at any opportunity. He would have understood you with sympathy because that was the type of man he was. Right now however, his own life, unrealised potential, great achievements, advocacy, insight – his wife and 2 daughters, probably that which entailed everything in his life are in the minds of a half a country or more. And you are not, and never will be old son.

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  146. Pete George (23,346 comments) says:

    His death has been reported as non-suspicious and referred to the coroner, which of course is code for suicide.

    Not necessarily so, as was demonstrated yesterday from reports of another death. Some news outlets have modified their original news reports, but some remain, eg:

    A man’s body has been found in Dunedin’s Botanic Garden.

    A police spokesman said emergency services were contacted just before nine this morning and found the body shortly afterwards.

    The death is not being treated as suspicious.

    http://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/auckland/news/nbnat/2022521942-body-found-in-dunedin-s-botanic-garden

    But more details are now being reported:

    Death linked to huffing

    A 27-year-old unemployed Dunedin man is believed to have died after inhaling from several gas canisters, which were found near his body in the Dunedin Botanic Garden early yesterday.

    Police could not confirm whether the man died as a result of huffing and have referred his death, which was not considered suspicious, to the coroner. It was likely a postmortem would be conducted.

    “Evidence at the scene suggested that [huffing] played a component,” Acting Senior Sergeant Dave Scott said.

    http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/233322/death-linked-huffing

    “Not suspicious and referred to the coroner” does not just apply to suspected suicide.

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  147. Minnie1972 (42 comments) says:

    FE Smith, poor choice of words. Most defence lawyers don’t want to know if the defendant is guilty or innocent – certainly I don’t know many defence lawyers who would profess to “know” whether or not someone was guilty or not – THAT is the point of the system isn’t it? That is why defence lawyers can justify (rightly) what they do – the Crown must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a person is guilty and that person is entitled to a full defence.

    I would hope that you, as a defence lawyer, would not conduct a legal case in the same way if you were actually 100% certain that someone committed a crime – for example, you would not allow them to give evidence and perjure themselves. You are an officer of the court no matter which side you are representing, after all…

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  148. soprano (1 comment) says:

    Such terribly sad news. I didn’t know him, but from what little I saw of him, I admired his intellect and tenancity. It is such a terrible waste and a loss to NZ. It (like most suicides) was a permanent solution to a temporary problem and I urge anyone considering it as a way out to seek help. There is always an answer to the problems that you face.

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  149. Chi Hsu (96 comments) says:

    F E Smith (2,194) Says:
    November 4th, 2012 at 11:39 pm

    Now, many will criticise Greg for such a postion, given the amount of people who belive McDonald to be guilty. But, and this is the strongest argument there is against the use of previous offences as a form of proving a current charge, it is entirely possible that McDonald engaged in the petty acts that he pleaded guilty to without him at all being guilty of the murder. It doesn’t even mean that he is more than likely to have committed the murder. So if Greg thought that McDonald was innocent, then I think that says a lot about the case.

    Firstly, I am shocked that you consider such actions as merely ‘petty’:

    One of the newly revealed charges was for killing 19 calves on Paul Barber’s Foxton property overnight on August 9, 2007. They were all bashed on the head with a heavy object, thought to be a ball-peen hammer.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/crime/7404869/Victim-blasts-bad-apple-Macdonald

    Secondly, whilst I am not closely familiar with the trial, I refer you to this report on the links between animal abuse and human violence:

    http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/publications/biosecurity-magazine/issue-80/animal-abuse

    Although there are many fictional stories out there that lawyers are inspired by (such as To Kill A Mockingbird) where things are never quite as they seem, sometimes you just have to realise that in the real world, Occam’s Razor is more likely than not to apply.

    If we take Garrett’s word, I am astounded that King found it believable that McDonald would not have murdered Guy, and just happened to brutally kill some cows with a weapon as well. The only other possibility I can think of is that it was done by McDonald’s accomplice – who I think had an alibi for the morning if I recall correctly.

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  150. rachett (2 comments) says:

    I cannot believe the couple of people on here who think that they can judge if Ewan was guilty based on a very small slice of the evidence that was presented at trial.

    These people are the very “witch sniffers” that Greg King did not understand- the people who think that they know best, and can judge if someone is guilty, without sitting through the masses of evidence that goes on at trial.

    The fact that there can be such prejudice from former convictions is why we have such strict evidence rules- posters such as Chi Hsu have demonstrated that these are clearly necessary.

    Greg said that the jury was made up of highly intelligent people- so they are to be trusted in their decision. That is the way our justice system works.

    To think anything else shows a high level of ignorance.

    RIP Greg, I met you only once but you were very inspirational to me.

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  151. thawkins (2 comments) says:

    Greg King, was a human being first and foremost subjected to the same frailities as all of us – and that includes suicide, sadness or even terror at the thought of potential complications of a diabetes diagnosis, or whatever other emotion he was affected by.

    That he was as an admired legal advocate was relevant only in so far as many of usl know of him mainly through the Scott Guy trial.

    IT COULD HAVE HAPPENED TO ANYONE ON THIS PLANET, – death is part and parcel of living, not matter how it occurs. -

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  152. Nostalgia-NZ (5,045 comments) says:

    Chi Hsu

    You’re entitled to be shocked by calves being killed, by the time I’ve finished this post many more will have been killed – but obviously not for reasons of revenge, probably a few of the local punters here will be eating them as prime burger meat later this month without a lettuce leaf in sight. But after that you take liberties to the point of trying to argue first of all against cruelty to animals as if that were an issue for the late Greg King, then along comes another extension that somehow EM was guilty and that Greg knew.

    Greg knew he was at home at the time of the killings according to several witnesses that heard the shots, the same time as it was recorded EM turned off an alarm at his place. That’s called an alibi, one which added to absence of proof against him. Post all the links you like, be outraged if you need to – however don’t be oblivious to the fact that a cherished nzer has tragically died and you that align yourself to speak out against him.

    You mentioned ‘To Kill A Mockingbird,’ I think Greg King would have got a laugh from that because you chose a classic to promote your argument in which an innocent man was found guilty on the basis of hatred and not by evidence.

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  153. F E Smith (3,315 comments) says:

    Minnie1972,

    It is not at all a poor choice of words. I stand by all of them. Moreover, if you bothered to read the Rules that lawyers in NZ operate under, you will see that if a client confesses to us then we are not able to advance a positive defence but may put the prosecution to proof.  However, if I come to the conclusion that my client is guilty without that confession and change the way I conduct the defence then I have acted unethically. My opinion of my client’s guilt or innocence is irrelevant, and might even be wrong. Even if I am 100% convinced of their guilt, in the absence of a confession then I am perfectly happy to advance their defence in the same way as I would if I thought that they were innocent.

    Chi Hsu,

    I did wonder if someone would jump on that word.  I use it within the context of the overall debate, in which it means both “having secondary rank or importance” and “showing or caused by meanness of spirit”.  When compared to the truly serious crime of murder, the killing of the calf etc wasn’t nearly as serious.

    With regards the rest of your comment, I don’t care whether he is guilty or innocent.  Not my issue.  And I know my profession, so there is no need to lecture me on it. I merely make the point that previous offending does not prove present accusations.

    EDIT: That last paragraph is an especially good point, Nostalgia.

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  154. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    if you bothered to read the Rules that lawyers in NZ operate under

    Well if they did that, this thread would read very differently.

    On one hand the critics argue that the defendant is guilty under the law, then in the nex breath they say the law, and correct legal process, should be put aside. Forget a trial, forget evidence, forget proof………… forget the law, if you “feel” the person may be guilty.

    If we forget the legal process, and law, then murder is not a crime in the first place. The sillyness does not stop there. They seem to think that a defence should not be mounted for the most serious charges, but seem unconcerned about defending minor charges. This is the opposite of what a reasonable person would think.

    Courts are about law not justice. Sometimes the two meet, sometimes they do not. The alternative is a lynch mob, inspired by the amount of emotion the accusation invokes. I you were wrongly accused of a hideous crime, which would you prefer dear reader?

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  155. b1gdaddynz (279 comments) says:

    You can’t blame Greg King for doing his job properly even if you don’t agree with the octcome; isn’t it grounds for a mis-trial if they accused isn’t defended properly? The case against EM that actually pertained to the murder of Scot Guy seemed to be extremely weak and it is quite riduculous to conclude that because he was guilty of other crimes he is guilty of murder! Greg King was a brilliant lawyer and by all logical reasoned accounts a really top kiwi. Can’t we just pay our respects without a pointless debate about a case that is over!

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  156. Chi Hsu (96 comments) says:

    Nostalgia-NZ (1,510) Says:
    November 5th, 2012 at 11:49 am

    Post all the links you like, be outraged if you need to – however don’t be oblivious to the fact that a cherished nzer has tragically died and you that align yourself to speak out against him.

    You mentioned ‘To Kill A Mockingbird,’ I think Greg King would have got a laugh from that because you chose a classic to promote your argument in which an innocent man was found guilty on the basis of hatred and not by evidence.

    The point I was making in reference to that book was that in the real world, situations are often different from fiction. So whilst an innocent man may have been found guilty in TKAM, in the real world, Occam’s Razor is a more reliable tool in discerning the truth of many matters.

    Also, please do not suggest that I am aligning myself against King. I am merely making an observation in response to FE Smith’s comments on the case, it is not my intention to speak about it in relation to King on a personal level. Death is the saddest thing and my sincerest condolences to all that knew him.

    F E Smith (2,195) Says:
    November 5th, 2012 at 11:56 am

    With regards the rest of your comment, I don’t care whether he is guilty or innocent. Not my issue. And I know my profession, so there is no need to lecture me on it. I merely make the point that previous offending does not prove present accusations.

    I agree with your statement in general – but I also think there are exceptions and in the McDonald case I consider them to be highly relevant to the type of character that he is. Just because the law says that previous offending should not be taken into account does not necessarily mean that Parliament has got it right. The purpose for the enforcement of that rule is because society deems juries to be too ‘stupid’ (probably not the best word to use but I can’t think of another at the moment) to not be able to distinguish between looking at the facts of an offence in isolation – and judging guilt in advance. Again, as I mentioned, I am not closely familiar with the case and am only going by what I’ve heard in the media.

    By the way, if you guys feel that it is inappropriate to continue discussing this in this thread, let’s move our conversation over to the GD thread. Just let me know if you’ve made a comment over there. I am posting on the basis that I do not think King’s family will be reading this.

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  157. Kea (11,878 comments) says:

    By the way, if you guys feel that it is inappropriate to continue discussing this in this thread, let’s move our conversation over to the GD thread.

    I feel uncomfortable discussing it on this thread.

    Some of the issues raised would be more appropriate discussed as part of a debate on an accused persons rights to representation. I really don’t think it appropriate to attack Greg King personally, on the basis of what his profession required him to do. He did his job very well.

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  158. ngati-ice (1 comment) says:

    Deepest Sympathy to the Family of this Brilliant Man. For all you insensitive ning-nongs discussing how he passed, leave it to the coroner, despite the reason for his death, this man was still someones husband, someones dad, someones son etc etc etc, he was still a human being and a huge loss.
    I doubt very much that there are many lawyers as brilliant as him, I’ve come across so many of them of a lesser calibre, who wouldn’t give ordinary people like us the time of day, but him, he was a peoples Lawyer & you can tell by the many friends who have come forward from so many different walks of life to his own.

    Rest in Peace.

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  159. Theotherside (1 comment) says:

    A flaw in the legal system is that Ewan MacDonald was not put on the stand and cross examined by the prosecution. Apparently it is acceptable behaviour in our legal system to discredit honorable witnesses, yet a major piece in the whole puzzle was to hear all witnesses to the crime. Ewan Macdonald was a key witness. My opinion!

    A flaw in the legal system is the inability of Judges to question the law and make decisions based on the information before them. We are under common law but our legal system has blinkers on and cannot see past the past. Judges so wrapped up in the system have no vision. Judges should not come from practicised lawyers as by the time they become judges they are already well entrenched in the system and no longer understand the impact their decisions or actions have on people. Unfortunately I don’t have the answer for you.

    A flaw in the legal system is mooted in past blogs. A lawyer will defend a client even if he ‘knows they are guilty’. Surely a moral issue here and to quote the ethical boundaries apparently a lawyer can throw a case, he just does it discretely. There’s a huge amount of literature on this. If you know someone is guilty, is it better to hand the case (and even assist) to the prosecution or is it that important to expose a hole in the law so that the guilty can walk free. Does that hole ever get filled?

    I have no issues with Mr King as a person but I do question the moral and ethical behaviour of some lawyers. The legal system is there to protect the people. Withholding information that could greatly assist the correct result in a case, is in my opinion, just as criminal.

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  160. katacu (1 comment) says:

    I was shocked to hear of his death and have to admit I too immediately wondered if it was suicide. Reason being that after seeing a TV interview with Mr King recently my overriding thoughts were on how on earth he could sleep at night doing such a job. I remember after the Clayton Weatherston trial hearing again & again people wondering “how those lawyers can live with themselves” etc.
    My sympathies go out to his family and to the man himself. Unlike some I don’t believe suicide is a selfish act. Yes, it’s devastating for those left to mourn but try to imagine the hopelessness & despair of someone who feels this the only option left to them. We should try to feel empathy for such people, not condemnation.

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  161. alber.cygnus (2 comments) says:

    The law is riddled with faults. Another example would be around current sentencing. There is no consistency between what each criminal will serve with regard to sentencing. One may be handed a concurrent sentence one day for committing multiple crimes and only serve time for one of those crimes. Another may be handed cumulative sentencing the next day and have to serve time for each offense end on end.

    It’s grossly unfair to the public that criminals in NZ often only serve concurrent sentencing so only do time for the most serious of all the crimes committed. Concurrent sentencing is not a great message to hardened criminals. It’s an incentive to do as much as possible knowing one will get off lightly. That mode of sentencing also gives the the onus on each judge to decide who gets what is also grossly inconsistent. Criminals should know what to expect when they commit multiple crimes.

    Someone could murder three people and only do 17 years minimum instead of 51 years, 17 years being the average sentence for murder in New Zealand. All sentencing should be cumulative and time for each crime served end on end. In MacDonald’s case both arson offenses were cumulative and the rest were concurrent, so his sentence was much less than it would have been if he had received each crime as cumulative sentences.

    Occam’s Razor: The problem there being that in each situation, the simplest answer to the problem (occams razor) could vary from one case to the next. I feel the simplest answer to the problem in the MacDonalds trial was to look at the factor of the other crimes, but as you say they were excluded from the case (despite being serious and it’s just a real pity that criminal profiling and looking at the psychological aspects of all the crimes committed against the victim by Ewan were not really factored in.

    This again was left down to legal representative and judge to decide when it should not have been an option… Some crimes that have were committed by Ewan MacDonald (e.g. relating to vengeful acts in this case against various farmers and people in the community in fits of rage) were clear aspects of his lack of regard for life.

    In criminal profiling and psychology it is commonly known that people who commit “inhumane” killing of animals will at some point be easily drawn to murdering someone. It’s the manner in which he killed the calves that is relevant, but this was swept aside by judge when those crimes should not have been as they are part of a character analysis and demonstrate what the person is capable of in a fit of rage and demonstrate the ability to premeditate and plan criminal activity.

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  162. kiwilady (1 comment) says:

    katacu(1) Says:
    November 7th, 2012 at 8:51 am

    I too agree that suicide isn’t a selfish act as a lot of people say. My father committed suicide when I was only 7 years old and it’s only now many, many years later that I’m trying to deal with it and grieve for him. Children are amazing at survival and manage to lock it down and ignore it as unable to deal with the enormity of what this means to them. My father had been clinically depressed for years and I now realise he truly believed he was doing us a favour by removing himself from our world so as not to screw us up too. Unfortunately when someone feels that bad for that long they aren’t thinking like a rational person would or they wouldn’t consider the option in the first place.

    My heart goes out to his wife and especially his small children, I hope that they get the much needed help earlier than I did so it doesn’t define their life as his ending will unfortunately define his. Lets try and remember his life rather than the circumstances of his death, that’s what I’m trying to do about my father.

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  163. alber.cygnus (2 comments) says:

    Not sure what is being implied in The Truth newspaper re Greg King this week and the questions posed about his suicide coinciding with an article (and expose) the Dominion where going to supposedly run on Saturday( 3rd November) morning featuring him? Greg’s body was found on Saturday morning around 10 am from what has been published? The Dominion would have been unable to pull any story that had been included (if the suggestion is true) in that days publishing at such short notice?

    The article also makes for a confusing read because journalists by their very nature will investigate any issue that they feel is important for the public to know about. It so happens that these people the press often publish story’s about rarely like being in the public eye for all the wrong reasons, but then who would?

    The average journalist has not one clue what will occur on such expose’s (or what the persons reaction will be either). If the press with held every story from the public’s attention pulled every story or refrained from exposing every person and their actions because they thought that by doing so, that there would be a likely suicide few stories would get written at all.

    Sometimes discrepencies in policing, politicians behaviour is exposed and rarely does the press bring any story to the public’s attention unless they can prove without a shadow of a doubt that the story is true.

    You can have no bias when your reporting the truth can you? Not if you’re serving the public (the majority) and in a democracy.

    I do know that if a story were untrue, and it were regarding a lawyer, knowing the law like the back of his hand he would stand and fight rather than take his life, so to suggest that some story was the reason for his death. I don’t think any lawyer who could prove his own innocence would be overly concerned about an expose enough to commit suicide…none of the article makes sense.

    Also Greg has said his self in interviews that he never based anything he did in life on what people think or otherwise he would not have become a defense lawyer. The job is stressful, her made it clear he didn’t care a jot about the public’s opinion. The suggestion was that the press had driven him to taking his own life.

    Not really sure if the person writing the article is telling ‘the truth’ but no doubt if there is some truth in it, it will come to the public’s attention at a more respectful time than the week of his death/funeral.

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  164. Rusty Writer (1 comment) says:

    Juut my opinion, I think Greg King was murdered. I would say he had enemies. Professional assassins know how to convincingly make a death look like an accident or suicide. I would say therefore that Greg King was “suicided”.

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