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Waikato Times
Sunday, 1 May 2011
Hamilton, New Zealand
Stabbing brings safety concerns

Police hunting a man who stabbed another man in a fight at a Hamilton bar early yesterday morning are urging him to give himself up before he is tracked down.

The 19-year-old Huntly victim had surgery in Waikato Hospital yesterday for a stab wound to his abdomen after the fight at the Axces Bar but would survive, Detective Sergeant Ricky Thompson said.

The man was today in a serious but stable condition.

Mr Thompson said the offender had yet to be identified but he was confident police would track him down.
"We have got bits and pieces but we still want to identify this person."

He said police had yet to recover a weapon.

"It was a stabbing situation and a weapon could be anything from a piece of glass to anything that is capable of stabbing."

Mr Thompson said it was better for the man to go to the police and give his side of the story rather than police finding him.

The teenager was stabbed in the busy Hamilton bar area off Victoria St about 2.30am yesterday when he and the other man got into a fight.

Mr Thompson said police wanted help from the public to identify the ofender and urged anyone who was in the area about 2am or later to call Hamilton police.

Bartender Stephanie Shaw, who works at a bar not far from Axces bar, where the stabbing took place, said she was in Axces at the time of the incident.

Miss Shaw said she saw a man with no shirt on, covered in blood, approaching the bouncer.

"It was kind of strange, it looked like he had walked out of the bar and then walked back in.

"The guy was so highly intoxicated he couldn't even tell that he had been stabbed."

Miss Shaw said the bouncer sat the man down and that was when they realised he had been stabbed multiple times.
"I personally thought they were knife wounds; they were perfect little slits and he was losing so much blood."

She said once they realised the seriousness of the situation, staff acted quickly to help the bleeding man and evacuate the building.

"I'm a bartender myself and I know that everyone is out to have fun and when something like this happens it is scary.

"That was what was so scary about it  you have a couple of scuffles every now and again but you don't expect something like that."

Axces Bar owner Aaron Donaldson said he did not see the incident.

"We're doing the best we can and we had enough security on, they were like four metres away," he said.

John Lawrenson, who owns a stable of bars, said the stabbing raised concerns about Hamilton's "fan zone" for the Rugby World Cup.

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