Tairua boat rage: Convicted murderer admits boat rage role, convicted and fined

A convicted murderer has admitted his role in a boat rage incident at a Coromandel wharf that went around the world.

John Frederick Dixon today admitted doing a dangerous activity involving ships and assaulting Catherine Maree Browning at Tairua on January 23.

This morning he was convicted and fined $750 in the Thames District Court.He was also given nine months supervision.

The argument was captured on video and involves swearing and shouting – finishing with the inflatable dinghy starting to sink after an enraged Dixon drives into the boat Browning was on.

Browning resigned as deputy principal of Tairua School and was granted diversion over her role, when she swung an oar at Dixon.

Dixon, who is on life parole, was recalled to prison.

The Hamilton District Court heard at the time that because of his criminal history an interim recall order came into effect immediately, pending a final decision by the Parole Board.

The video shows the man claiming the people on Browning’s boat damaged his dinghy after they exceeded the speed limit.

“You piece of s*** you’ve just caused $1000 of damage,” Dixon screams.

“You drive past my boat, you rock it if you’re not doing 5 knots.”

He then circles the boat ramp while Browning grabs an oar.

When a person tells the man children are on their boat, Dixon replies, “I don’t care.”

He then drives directly into the back of the boat, damaging one side of his inflatable dinghy, which then starts deflating.

Browning, holding a wooden oar, can then be seen in the water swinging it at Dixon several times as he attempts to get away while young children can be heard crying in the background.

Court documents state that Dixon said “he was just giving back what the other vessels deserved after damaging his vessel”.

He declined to make a formal statement or be interviewed by police.

However he had since indicated he “feels sorry for the victim and the consequences thishas caused”.

As there was no damage to any other vessel, no reparation was sought.

Dixon's murder conviction

Dixon has spent the past three decades on parole after he was convicted of murdering another man at the age of 16.

He was released from prison in 1987 after serving eight years for the murder of Joseph Hishon in 1978.

Dixon was found guilty of bashing Hishon to death after he refused to loan him money.

Hishon was found in a pool of blood and died from “extensive head injuries” and a broken skull.

Dixon admitted to punching and kicking Hishon, crying to police after the crime and claiming he had only wanted to knock him out.

Psychiatrists at the trial found Dixon had severe anger issues and a personality disorder and had been sent to a boys’ home at the age of 11 after his parents struggled to control him.

The trial heard Dixon had “marginally abnormal brain functions” and he had “a tendency to overreact to threats, teasing or any excitement”.

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