A brave Queenstown woman in her 50s has emerged as an unlikely hero for an ex-All Black allegedly attacked by two men.
The sleight woman says she didn’t hesitate when driving past two men allegedly assaulting Queenstown-based ex-All Black Justin Marshall three weeks ago.
“I didn’t even pull over – I just left the car running in the middle of the road. I jumped out and ran across the road with arms outstretched and shoved one of the two guys.
“Screaming like a mad woman” when she bravely intervened after having finished work, she says of the guy she shoved: “He just sort of stopped and stared at me and I was standing there staring at him and other guy was still having a go. I started yelling at the guys behind him to grab him, which they did because people were just kind of standing there watching.”
Asked if she’d been scared, she replied: “I didn’t even think about it. I’d jump in and help anyone. I think I yelled ‘We don’t need to see this shit on the streets of Queenstown’.”
Last week Mountain Scene revealed how two bouncers had stepped into help Marshall during the incident outside Night ‘n’ Day on Shotover Street at about 1.20am on Good Friday – this woman was the first to intervene.
Bouncers from strip joint Club 88 down the road then arrived and helped a bloodied Marshall out, she says.
“I yelled at the people in Night ‘n’ Day, who were standing there staring through the window, to call the police.
“The two guys that did it just casually walked off around the corner,” she says.
Soon after, when the woman was driving home down Church Street, she again pulled over when she saw police talking to one of the two men involved in the alleged assault.
“This guy was trying to make out he was the victim. He was going ‘No, I’m the victim’ and I thought ‘Bullshit you were’.”
“I don’t know what Justin Marshall did beforehand but there’s no need [for what was happening].
“What I saw was so bloody wrong.”
The woman, who often works till midnight and after, says she’s sees a lot of downtown violence at night and has had enough.
“There’s so much of it happening and there’s virtually no police presence. They’re not walking around the spots where it happens – it’s bloody chaotic out there some nights, especially weekends, it’s a disgrace.
“People should be walking around these parts at night time – these are hotspots and this is what happens in these places, it’s appalling.”
The woman’s friend Jackie Kukutai, who runs a Queenstown Taxis subsidiary and local franchise of First Security – dealing with residential and commercial property checks – praises the woman’s bravery calling her “an unrecognised hero in our community”.
“A lot of us would just shy away so give her a pat on the back. And [for] protecting Justin – because I don’t care what anyone says, he’s an entity in our town and he does some good work on our behalf.”
Last week, Mountain Scene revealed how Club 88 bar manager Richie Peterson ushered a bleeding Marshall upstairs to the venue afterwards to clean him up.
Peterson and Club 88 owner Adam Nagy put him in the Champagne Room till an ambulance arrived.
Paramedics later decided Marshall didn’t need hospital treatment and he declined transport.
Two Christchurch men – Adam David Kearns, in Queenstown celebrating his 23rd birthday, and Tai Neilson, 25, – have been charged with assaulting Marshall with intent to injure him.
The pair are on bail and must stay at their respective homes in Christchurch and stick to a curfew between 9pm and 6am.
They are scheduled to appear in Queenstown District Court on May 19.