Wellington Airport tyre slasher dodges jail sentence

A Wellington man who slashed hundreds of tyres in Miramar has had his jail sentence quashed.

David Francis Johns, known as the notorious 'Miramar tyre slasher', targeted vehicles of hundreds of airline passengers parked in the neighbourhood with a sharpened screwdriver.

He had described himself as a vigilante who got carried away, saying his actions were effective and he would have continued if he hadn't been caught.

Johns was sentenced to 22 months in prison in April, but his sentence has been thrown out.

He appealed the sentence in the Wellington High Court and on Monday, Judge Simon France decided he would instead serve a few months of community detention.

The judge decided the jail term was "wholly out of proportion", labelling the offending "relatively minor".

Judge Tim Black, who handed down the original sentence, said the offending was pre-meditated, sustained over a period of months, had multiple victims, cost $20,000 in damage, and Johns showed no remorse.

Now, Johns will instead serve four months of community detention, 250 hours community work and will be supervised for a maximum of 12 months.

Johns had told police he slashed the tyres in frustration at the crowded parking situation, after trying to get in touch with council over the issue.

Miramar residents had expressed anger over Wellington airport users parking for free in the suburb, often for long periods of time.

Johns reacted angrily to the media presence outside court after his appearance in January and took a swing at a visual journalist.