BEYOND THE DARKLANDS
TVONE TUESDAY 02 FEBRUARY 9.30PM
The nation was captivated when Antonie Dixon turned up in court sporting a pudding bowl haircut and pulling strange faces in an attempt to look mad. During a P-fuelled rampage in 2003, Dixon attacked two women friends with a samurai sword and left them fighting for their lives; and then shot and killed a total stranger, James Te Aute. Tonight on Beyond The Darklands, Nigel Latta takes a look at Dixon's life, and attempts to understand what made him commit the crimes he did.
Latta describes him as, "... set on this path almost before he could talk ..."
Dixon told the court he "had no part of this world" due to his upbringing as a Jehovah's Witness.
Defence lawyer Barry Hart, "Dixon had a terrible background and it was an indictment on New Zealand society that he had not received treatment earlier. As a boy he was abused, he was tied to a clothesline and made to bark like a dog, he said. His parents, who were Jehovah's Witnesses, were more focused on their religion, with Dixon being pushed from pillar to post, he said."
TV3 news. TUE, 22 JUL 2008
When Antonie Dixon told the jury an astonishing tale of sexual abuse by his mother and beatings at the hands of Jehovah's Witnesses, they must have wondered whether any of it was believable. Today they heard from someone else who was there at the time and she confirmed much of what he said. According to Dixon's sister Carla, he was dubbed "devil spawn" by their mother. Carla Dixon-Foxley says she was his closest friend and ally, but from a young age she knew something was not quite right with her baby brother. "He used to bash his head on the couch and he used to just sit there and like that, bashing, bashing, bashing," Ms Dixon-Foxley says.
Ms Dixon-Foxley says Dixon was abused by their mother, who would tie him to a clothesline outside their Grey Lynn house and invite fellow members of the Jehovah's Witness church to beat him. "It was like living in a madhouse," Ms Dixon-Foxley says. She told the jury that Dixon was also sexually abused by members of the church. Among his abusers was one man who always carried a camera. "Of course we know why he had the camera now," Ms Dixon-Foxley says. "He was taking pornographic pictures of my brother and his friends."
In cross examination, the Crown questioned Antonie Dixon's sister on whether she had ever seen him violent - especially violent towards his mother. She replied that as far as she was concerned, any violence towards their mother was justified. "When you get backed into a corner for long enough and you get hurt for a long, long time, you have to jump back," Ms Dixon-Foxley says. "You have to defend yourself and that's what I believed it was. It was self-defence."
Ms Dixon-Foxley, who has a successful career as a nutritionist in London recalled a family conference where a psychiatrist asked her how she had managed to stay sane in the Dixon family home. She says she had no answer. At the end of her evidence, Ms Dixon-Foxley blew her brother a kiss before walking over to hug him.