A man accused of assaulting an acquaintance in the emergency lane of a Perth freeway, which left the victim in a pool of blood, has been acquitted at trial.
Rewi Te Mahenga Hiko went on trial this week in the West Australian District Court, charged with assault occasioning bodily harm to Dylan Edwards and causing bodily harm to Mr Edwards' wife Sarah in June last year.
The court heard Mr Hiko, his partner and the other couple had shared a taxi after a day out at the rugby and a Perth bar, but animosity brewed between the men during the ride, which descended into a roadside fight.
Mr Hiko pleaded self defence, admitting he'd assaulted Mr Edwards as he slept in the taxi and again on the roadside but denied he'd also kicked him, as alleged by the prosecution.
Mr Hiko said he tackled Mr Edwards to the ground because he was charging, then punched him a couple of times before the victim's wife pulled him off.
Witnesses to the fight included a police officer on his way to work, who testified he saw Mr Edwards yell something and break into a sprint towards Mr Hiko.
Ms Edwards said Mr Hiko also punched her several times to the left upper arm, but he said he was aiming at her husband.
While Judge John Staude described CCTV footage of the incident as shocking, he instructed the jury to make their own assessment of it.
The jury unanimously found Mr Hiko not guilty on Thursday.