A man is set to fight a murder charge after an alleged incident on the Coromandel Peninsula earlier this year.
Joey Richards today entered a not guilty plea to a charge of murdering Guy Richards, 43, at a rural Manaia property about 12.30pm on March 18 this year.
Richards, appearing via audio visual link in the High Court at Hamilton this morning, was further remanded in custody.
He is set to reappear in court for a bail hearing tomorrow.
'A very caring, loving soul'
Family member Kaelene Bolton told the Herald that Guy Richards was "an awesome little cousin growing up".
"Always willing to learn and help, always smiling with his signature smile. He loved being around his whānau and making sure everyone was [okay] and he continued to do so in adulthood.
"A very caring, loving soul."
A former OP Columbia (OPC) team leader in Whitianga, Kathryn Wheeler, said Guy Richards worked many seasons with her alongside his mum and two brothers.
She remembered him for his humour, wit, and being "always willing to do the extra work where it was needed".
Former principal of Coromandel Area School Doug McLean said Guy Richards' death was "absolutely tragic" and shocking.
McLean said he played basketball for the school and dabbled in rugby and his family has been part of the Manaia community for generations.
- Belinda Feek, Open Justice