A heated argument between neighbors Selwyn Cornelius and Mark Paaka led to the brutal murder of one of them in front of the entire neighborhood.
It started after Paaka’s dog allegedly defecated on Cornelius’ yard. Cornelius was not happy with this, and an argument between the two erupted. There had reportedly been prior incidents involving Paaka’s dog, but this time, Cornelius had had enough.
Later in the evening, around 8 p.m., Cornelius snapped, got in his car, and ran over Paaka while he was taking a walk with a friend in the neighborhood. As Paaka’s friend attempted to help him, Cornelius proceeded to run him over two more times. The entire ordeal happened in front of neighbors and their children. An ambulance arrived and medical personnel attempted the revive Paaka, but they were unsuccessful.
Following the brutal murder, Cornelius fled to his friend’s home, but eventually, his friend took him to the police station to turn himself in. According to reports, Cornelius had been talking about killing Paaka the entire day following the argument and prior to the actual murder. A friend had tried to calm him down in the afternoon, but that did not work.
Right before killing Paaka, Cornelius apparently went and hugged his granddaughters, which seems to be an indication that he knew what would happen to him if he went through with the murder.
Now, Cornelius is sitting in a New Zealand jail after being sentenced to life in prison with a non-parole period of nearly 16 years.