Stags halfback Cowan done for Queenstown assault


A Southland rugby player who repeatedly punched a bouncer during a Queenstown bar brawl has been fined after appearing in Queenstown District Court.

Gore-based Southland Stags halfback Scott Patrick Cowan, 30, admitted assaulting doorman Scott Lewis

Lewis suffered small cuts to his face, swelling and a black eye after being punched three times as he attempted to eject Cowan from Searle Lane’s Bar Up at 1.35am on October 12.

Cowan – younger brother of All Blacks halfback Jimmy Cowan – was out drinking with friends.

Prosecuting sergeant Ian Collin says bar staff judged Cowan too drunk to serve.

Bouncers from nearby Bar Up had already called for assistance from other door staff as they faced the prospect of ejecting Cowan’s increasing rowdy group from the bar.

Cowan’s lawyer Nic Soper says: “By that stage they were all liberally intoxicated.”

Soper says Cowan was having an amicable conversation with the bar manager about his level of intoxication when a bouncer grabbed him from behind and put his arm around his neck and other arm up his back.

Soper says: “Perhaps not surprisingly Mr Cowan struggled. It was all on from that point.

“There was a general melee, arms flying everywhere and during the course of that Mr Cowan accepts that he struck the doorman several times.”

Sergeant Collin says Lewis was punched three times in the face.

The charge was downgraded from assault with intent to injure to assault.

Soper says: “He’s deeply sorry and genuinely remorseful. It was completely out of character.”

Cowan was fined $500 and ordered to pay $500 in emotional harm reparation.