A Supreme Court jury took just an hour and a half to find a Riverside man not guilty of causing grievous bodily harm to his longtime friend in a fight in June 2018.
The jury also found Luke Frans Bezemer, 38, not guilty of assault in relation to a drunken fight with Kane William Wiffen at his Riverside home.
Chief Justice Alan Blow directed the jury to consider that the men may have been engaged in a lawful fight after a message was passed on that Mr Wiffen was travelling to Mr Bezemer's home to "sort him out".
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Counsel for Mr Bezemer Fran McCracken argued that Mr Bezemer was acting in self defence when he punched Mr Wiffen causing him to fall and suffer facial injuries and a broken leg.
The fight occurred after tension built up between the men after Mr Wiffen crashed Mr Bezemer's utility while driving while drunk.
Mr Bezemer told the court that he had lost the vehicle and $40,000 worth of work because his insurance company would not pay out because Mr Wiffen was over 0.05. He said he was disappointed in Mr Wiffen's attempts at reparation.
On the night of the incident, Mr Bezemer was annoyed that Mr Wiffen arrived late. After a few beers and discussion of Mr Bezemer being out of pocket, a struggle erupted when Mr Bezemer took Mr Wiffen's keys.
Mr Bezemer said he did not want him to drink and drive while Mr Wiffen said that he believed Mr Bezemer was going to keep his car as collateral.