Andrew Mears cut a pathetic figure standing in the dock charged with manslaughter - charged with the accidental shooting and killing of Rosemary Ives at a camping ground near Turangi.
He mistook her for a deer during a night shoot in a reckless and stupid act, but the contrite young man immediately pleaded guilty and immediately confronted the consequences of his actions.
Mears prepared a statement for Sunday, and for the nation,
wanting everyone to learn from his mistake.
It's the thrill of the kill, those adrenaline pumping few moments before the hunter pulls the trigger on his prey.
But sometimes the euphoria overrides good hunting practice, and the excitement of the kill takes over from commonsense. The target is not clearly identified, there is another hunting accident and someone dies needlessly.
Are shooting accidents reckless or criminal? Are the perpetrators getting off lightly?