Tapu Misa on Emery sentence

February 16th, 2009 at 6:30 am by David Farrar

Tapu Misa writes on the sentence:

The jury convicted him of manslaughter because they couldn’t be sure that he intended to kill Pihema. I would probably have given Emery the benefit of the doubt, too. But was his sentence of 4 years 3 months too light?

The decision is being criticised from both sides. Some people are saying Emery should not go to jail at all. Others are saying the sentence is too light. This suggests to me it is about right.

I think manslaughter was definitely the correct verdict. Is the sentence too light?

Well as far as I can tell the average is 71 months and Emery got 51 months. It isn’t surprising he got less than the average as he was a first time offender. I suppose you could argue for an extra year or so, but by the time you take into account parole and home detention, it is only going to change his actual prison time by a few months.

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40 Responses to “Tapu Misa on Emery sentence”

  1. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    Brian Rudman’s “bleeding heart” piece is far worse:

    http://keepingstock.blogspot.com/2009/02/rudman-on-emery.html

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  2. petal (706 comments) says:

    I’m going to put my hand up as someone who finds your constant self-promotion of your blog to be impolite at least.

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  3. wikiriwhis business (4,135 comments) says:

    I love reading Tapu. Her Polynesian outlook mixed with her deep Kiwi insight has been amongst the most refreshing journalism for a long time and almost a paradigm in journalism.

    I would like to see more Polynesian and Maori women discussing sport and politics on main stream tv instead of the constant diet of blonde bimbo’s thrown at us. another one chucked at us on Good morning also. Uggh.

    I think Emery deserves some doubt. Everyone though was aware of the tagging problem in the area.

    He should have had a baseball bat prepared to appear threatening. At the worst, a hit to the ribs.

    The reason why people are becoming so agitated is because the communists took our right to defend our property away from us. If you defend yourself with a waepon you are arrested. Emery was raped far b4 the boy was killed.

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  4. dime (10,134 comments) says:

    people lose sight of what this guy did, because he did it to a tagger.

    taggers are lowlife pieces of garbage… however, this guy chased a 15yr kid 300metres down the road and drove a kitchen knife into his chest. thats extreme.

    the judge was correct to highlight the knife in sentencing. its easy to sit here and say “tough luck for the little prick”.. but he stabbed him to death. not a fun way to go.

    can you imagine what it feels like to stab someone? urgh

    anyway, the sentence seems about right. the guys life is in ruins. he has kids that need a dad. prision isnt meant to be just about punishment.. at the same time, i dont feel bad for the guy.

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  5. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    petal – point taken :-) In my defence however, I would argue that the link supplied was directly relevant to the topic on which DPF has invited discussion. Both Rudman and Misa’s columns are highly debateable.

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  6. He-Man (270 comments) says:

    If Shipton can get out of jail early for a pack rape, then seeing that Emery will be out in a couple of years for chasing a kid down and stabbing the kid to death, there are serious problems with justice in this country.

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  7. grumpyoldhori (2,362 comments) says:

    Let me turn this around, if the tagger was from Remuera and Pakeha and the bloke who stabbed him was Maori , would it have been a manslaughter verdict ?

    Would a Maori first time offender have got such a light sentence for manslaughter ? I have my doubts.
    So Emery will be out in what, two years, prancing around South Auckland.
    Hope that boy’s family have got short memories

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  8. He-Man (270 comments) says:

    Imagine the scenario where Act’s three strikes might lock away a tagger for many years, whereas killers such as Emery walk out after a short stint.

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  9. MT_Tinman (3,263 comments) says:

    Dime I think you are completely wrong.

    There is, in current NZ, no other way to deter these vandal scum.

    Someone on this blog (I think) pointed out the other day that vandalism in Emery’s area stopped damned near immediately after this incident.

    Not a perfect solution I admit but I would have pinned a medal on Emery and thanked him for doing the job police are paid to do and would happily do if their leaders weren’t too busy trying to change law instead of enforcing it.

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  10. dime (10,134 comments) says:

    hori – well considering maori account for about 50% of our criminals and the sentencing is a joke in this country.. yea, he probably would have got the same sentence. or maybe their would have been hui’s up and down the country and the courts would have been advised that it was his cultural right to stab someone.. article 2 of the treaty etc.

    and yes, my smart ass, redneck response is what your post deserves :)

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  11. KiwiGreg (3,260 comments) says:

    “however, this guy chased a 15yr kid 300metres down the road and drove a kitchen knife into his chest”

    Emery just doesn’t look that fit.

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  12. Brian Smaller (4,026 comments) says:

    No he doesn’t, and I think it was 390 metres. He claimed that the two advanced upon him, which sounds plausible seeing as the knife wound was to the tagger’s front, not his back.

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  13. Captain Crab (351 comments) says:

    Dime
    ” drove a kitchen knife into his chest”

    No he didnt “drive ” it in. The tagger ran at him and the knife went in as they clashed. The pathology report supports this.
    I very much doubt Rudman has met any of these little thugs. Perhaps if he did he may have a different view.

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  14. wikiriwhis business (4,135 comments) says:

    I should’ve understod there’s a lot of people on here who don’t like Tapu Misa

    kep it blonde and boring and shallow.

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  15. Hagues (703 comments) says:

    He-Man “Imagine the scenario where Act’s three strikes might lock away a tagger for many years, whereas killers such as Emery walk out after a short stint.”

    As much as locking taggers away for long periods of time is greatly appealling due to their blantant disregard for the property of others and their conscience decision not to behave in a acceptable manner in society, it is extremely unlikely that tagging would be on the list of “strikable offences.” But if it was, so what? The offenders get warned under the strike system that any more offenses will result in them going to jail for a long time, so if they choose to reoffend, they choose to go away for a long time.

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  16. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    wikiriwhi’s business said “I should’ve understod there’s a lot of people on here who don’t like Tapu Misa”

    It’s not a question of whether one likes or dislikes Tapu Misa wb – my objection to what she has written, and even moreso to what Rudman wrote is that they have distorted the facts. Rudman calls Pihema Cameron a “child” – patently, he was anything but – he was, as I blogged, a young man fuelled on testosterone, alcohol and cannabis, and was out late at night committing crimes. And Misa’s bias is obvious in the way she refers to the two main characters – here’s an example:

    ‘The jury convicted him of manslaughter because they couldn’t be sure that he intended to kill Pihema. I would probably have given Emery the benefit of the doubt, too. But was his sentence of 4 years 3 months too light?”

    The “villain” referred to by his surname; the “victim” by his christian name. It’s sloppy journalism from Misa – and that, not personality, is the basis of my criticism.

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  17. dime (10,134 comments) says:

    Captain Crib – ok fine.. he still took a kitchen knife and chased after some kids? what was his intention? to scare them?

    why didnt he just call the cops?

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  18. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    dime – I’m sure that’s a question that Bruce Emery has asked himself endlessly. He didn’t. He made a mistake – a mistake with tragic consequences for two families.

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  19. Helensphotogenicimposter (244 comments) says:

    This Emery Cacase is a tragedy in many ways. It is made worse because Pehima Cameron’s mother and family insist on portraying their wayward, disrespectful unsupervised son as a saint, but did nothing to stop him from getting into a situation where he might be killed. When the time came, he was ashamedly too pissed and stoned to run away from a middle aged fat man. Mr Emery was like most people, wanting to defend his family and property from low lifes that Pehima Cameron had clearly become.

    Arguably, running after someone with a knife was stupid and risked your own life. However, “call the cops”. We had a Labour government at the time. That would have done Sweet FA, and these low lifes would have been back the next night!

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  20. gd (2,286 comments) says:

    dime Emery had called the cops time and time again and the best they could do was tell him to FOXTROT OSCAR. If the Police cant/wont do the job they are paid to do then its up to the citizens to do it for them

    the Police cant on the one hand tell the citizens to call them then plead they cant wont respond on the other hand. Doesnt matter what the excuse is the fact is if the Police refuse to act they are 2 faced to whine when the citizens do.

    And as for the punk and his mates. When they stop defiling good citizens property then it wont be necessary for the citizens to deal to them The ball is in their court.

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  21. baxter (893 comments) says:

    TINMAN………The regular tagging in the park opposite my house has ceased since the incident as well and I live at the opposite end of the island.
    GRUMPY…………..I can recall a Maori who only got 3 years for holding his toddler up against a heater until she expired. Judge JURY was the judge.. I don’t think he has heard a case since though.

    EMERY did chase the Taggers , he had too,otherwise, they would just wait until he had gone inside and return and tag again. What was in his mind, and whether the Tagger met his death through his own action or that of Emery is amatter of conjecture. The Jury decided one way, but that could have been a compromise among themselves some wanting murder others wanting acquittal. To my mind EMERY could have been given the benefit of the doubt.

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  22. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    Grumpyoldhori , let it go. I note that a “Maori” offender tried twice to strangle a little girl with a scarf a few months back and only got four years, it should have being bloody twenty. Justice in this country often appears to be one sided, it just depends on what side of the fence you stand on.

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  23. Christopher (425 comments) says:

    What emery did was stupid because in this country so much as looking the wrong way at a maori thug will get you in trouble with the law.

    Putting aside questions of practicality and focusing only on morality, what Emery did was absolutely right, except for the fact that he didn’t get the other little fucker too.

    This country will never get rid of its disgusting crime problem until softcock left wing fucknuts take their heads out of their perfumed arses and wake up to the fact that defending yourself and your property with every ounce of force you can bring to bear is not only morally right but also good for society as a whole.

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  24. wikiriwhis business (4,135 comments) says:

    “The “villain” referred to by his surname; the “victim” by his christian name. It’s sloppy journalism from Misa – and that, not personality, is the basis of my criticism.”

    Ok, I can understand that.

    I ticked you up.

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  25. wikiriwhis business (4,135 comments) says:

    But I just thought, why didn’t his lawyers turn it to self defense.

    Is that not plausible anymore?

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  26. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    They did wb – the jury rejected that defence, just as they rejected the Crown’s case that it was premeditated murder – from the jury’s point of view, it was a “safe” verdict.

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  27. Rex Widerstrom (5,354 comments) says:

    To MT_Tinman, who says

    There is, in current NZ, no other way to deter these vandal scum.

    and those who are approvingly noting the lack of tagging in the area following the taking of a life, can I just ask that if we’re now in favour of summary execution for minor offences where human life is in no way at risk, can I please get “cutting in front of me in your SUV without indicating” added to the list?

    That happens frequently too, it’s illegal, and frankly there’s no other way to deter these arrogant scum.

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  28. Exiled (20 comments) says:

    Perhaps if a few more people chased criminals down the street there’d be a bit less crime. It’s a tragedy that a youngster lost his life, but it’s more of a tragedy that his life was on such a bad course to begin with. Regrettably there seems to be something of the inevitable about his demise. But of course it’s no suprise that Tapu yet again fails to mention the elephant in the room.

    Tapu’s opinion pieces (let’s face it, it’s not journalism) have always been good for a little side game or two. For the longest time she liked to blame the white man for all that ails the brown folk of NZ (funny how she can differentiate between Maori, Samoans, Indians, Chinese etc., but all white fellas apparently all come from the same tribe). It was always fun to predict how many lines into her latest piece it would be before she blamed the white man, but she seems to have toned that down a bit these days (even though you can sense the underlying sentiment is still there). These days it’s fun to play the “What phrase did Tapu type into Google this week?” game. You see, she likes to quote various academics to provide a crutch to whatever argument she’s presenting (as though that somehow validates what she’s saying), so a little reverse engineering of the quotes often reveals the phrase she used to source them. It shows that often Tapu doesn’t really dig that deep to earn her weekly Herald paycheck.

    Ok, admittedly these ‘games’ might be a little sad but they’re a damn sight more interesting that anything that Tapu Misa has to say.

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  29. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    I think everyone is missing the big lesson in all of this.

    What the hell did his parents think he was doing as a 15 year old out roaming the street at nights?

    His parents are at least partly to blame for this mess.
    If parents took more interest and care in what their kids where up to then this almost certainly wouldnt have happened.

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  30. Jim (398 comments) says:

    Rex: ‘can I please get “cutting in front of me in your SUV without indicating” added to the list?’

    Touche! Can we just generalise that to “not indicating”? That’d clean up the streets.

    Also: where are those folks who say capital punishment is not an effective deterrent? ;)

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  31. AG (1,832 comments) says:

    wikiriwhis business:
    “Emery was raped far b4 the boy was killed.”

    Actually, I think you’ll find that’s what’ll happen to him now he’s serving his time. What … too harsh?

    Exiled:
    “Perhaps if a few more people chased criminals down the street there’d be a bit less crime.”

    Or perhaps we’d end up like this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yoshihiro_Hattori

    barry:
    “His parents are at least partly to blame for this mess.
    If parents took more interest and care in what their kids where up to then this almost certainly wouldnt have happened.”

    Can we PLEASE move on from discussing Paula Bennett’s inability to raise a child? And the parental inadequacies of the Ashley family (http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10398239)? Oh, what … these are off limits but everyone can pile into the Cameron family without knowing the first thing about them? Sorry – wasn’t aware of the “if they are brown, it’s OK to criticise” rule.

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  32. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    AG – don’t look now, but I think you might find out that Paula Bennett is brown too. That kinda blows your racial stereotyping hypothesis doesn’t it ;-)

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  33. AG (1,832 comments) says:

    I2.

    Yes. It does. Correction accepted, hypothesis retracted.

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  34. barry (1,317 comments) says:

    Slow up AG – I said……

    “If parents took more interest…….” theres an ‘s’ on the parents – its PLURAL.

    Yes Paula Bennet was probably far to liberal and wanted her daughter to be a friend rather than a daughter – but the real problem is the gang member – his parents are totally at fault. And the Ashley parents are at fault also, but they had tried and they were in favour of the police taking him away as a short sharp lesson. What they forgot – or took a chance on – was the fact that there were even bigger fukwits out there and one just might do some harm to their son.

    Oh – and I dont think I had mentioned Bennets situation at all before you did – or were you “tongue in cheek”

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  35. AG (1,832 comments) says:

    ” … or were you “tongue in cheek””

    Yes. I was. I simply was pointing out the broad rush to judgment by folks like yourself with respect to the Camerons, while we are urged to treat other family matters as personal tragedies that are no-one else’s business (see previous discussion threads on Paula Bennett in particular).

    As for Mrs Cameron, claiming she must be a bad parent because her 15 year old kid did a bad thing is logically flawed (“post hoc ergo propter hoc”, to give it a formal name). The media reports on her indicate that she cared for her son, sought to punish him for tagging in the past, but ultimately couldn’t control him (much like the Ashleys’ situation). No doubt much of her grief is displaced anger that she wasn’t able to do more for him. Certainly there’s no evidence I’ve yet seen that she was neglectful/culpable (cf the Kahui/Curtis disasters). And unless you’ve got some, I wonder why you feel competent to judge?

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  36. grumpyoldhori (2,362 comments) says:

    Rex Widerstrom, getting cut off by a SUV no problem, just get yourself a forty tonne rig, makes a real satisfying bang when it cleans up a SUV.

    Oh, and the fuckwits who believe they have the largest vehicle on Remmers rd are the bloody worst.

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  37. enough rope (104 comments) says:

    This country will never get rid of its disgusting crime problem until softcock left wing fucknuts take their heads out of their perfumed arses and wake up to the fact that defending yourself and your property with every ounce of force you can bring to bear is not only morally right but also good for society as a whole.

    Softcocks, eh? Defend your property with every ounce of force, all the while making sure that you maintain a raging boner. Can’t really see the point of that, but hey, whatever rocks your boat.

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  38. Paul Marsden (999 comments) says:

    These young criminals simply do not know or, want to know about respect for others in society or, personal responsibility. They only respect and respond to a force that is greater and stronger than them. Usually that entails violence against them (or, the threat of violence), which for most of them, is the only thing they understand. That is why tagging stopped overnight in the neighbourhood following the stabbing. The only way these criminals will be curbed (at their stage of life) is to have a no-nonsense police force led by men of the ilk of Gideon Tait. Having the bjesus scared out of them, will swiftly curb their ways.

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  39. Inventory2 (10,443 comments) says:

    AG said “As for Mrs Cameron, claiming she must be a bad parent because her 15 year old kid did a bad thing is logically flawed (”post hoc ergo propter hoc”, to give it a formal name). The media reports on her indicate that she cared for her son, sought to punish him for tagging in the past, but ultimately couldn’t control him (much like the Ashleys’ situation). No doubt much of her grief is displaced anger that she wasn’t able to do more for him.”

    Interesting perspective AG – I agree with you that Mrs Cameron’s outburst after Court on Friday had an element of self-flagellation. Then again, it’s hard to control your troubled teenager when he’s in Manurewa and you’re working in Perth. As a parent myself, I wouldn’t label her as a bad parent, because I don’t know enough about the family’s circumstances, and anyway, people in glasshouses etc. But getting a phone call such as she must have when you weren’t there for your child must be a tough burden to bear.

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  40. oob (191 comments) says:

    but everyone can pile into the Cameron family without knowing the first thing about them? Sorry – wasn’t aware of the “if they are brown, it’s OK to criticise” rule.

    We can infer everything we need to know from the facts around this criminal’s demise and the fact that his given name is a Maori one.

    We all know what the Cameron family is because we’ve seen it and heard it all before. We get to criticise because it’s us as taxpayers that are paying the welfare cheques and us as victims that are paying the social cost.

    Decent New Zealand is tired of paying the shallow-end of the gene pool to breed generation after generation of welfare recipients and criminals, while our police focus on minor driving infractions, our justice system creaks under the case load and our infrastructure decays into ruins for want of investment.

    Piha Cameron’s death is a saving. One less career criminal that we would have had to support for a lifetime through welfare and incarceration.

    Thanks for the better roads and faster Internet, Bruce Emery.

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