May serve just three years for murder

Marty Sharpe in the Dom Post reports:

A woman’s eight-year jail term for murdering her partner reflects the judiciary’s lack of understanding towards male victims of domestic violence, a men’s rights spokesman says.

Hastings GP Viv Roberts was commenting on Monday’s sentencing of Jacqueline Wihongi, 33, in the High Court at Napier.

The mother of six stabbed her partner of 17 years, Vivian Hirini, in the chest with a kitchen knife in June last year.

In sentencing, Justice John Wild said Wihongi had a tragic “history of victimhood” and it would have been “manifestly unjust” to have given her life imprisonment.

The couple had a violent relationship and frequently assaulted each other. Mr Hirini had been stabbed previously by Wihongi and had lost an eye when she hit him with a bottle. The court was shown a ringbinder containing about 500 pages of police reports on domestic callouts involving the couple.

Splitting up would seem rather sensible.

SIMILARITIES OF VIOLENT CRIMES

MALE

Bailey Gabriel Pirini, 38, of Kaikohe, pleaded guilty at his fifth court appearance to murdering his partner of six months, Lola Paraha, on January 13.

His daughter was present when he used an iron bar to kill Ms Paraha.

The pair had been drinking and started to argue.

Crown prosecutor Mike Smith said Pirini showed no remorse and tried to shift the blame to Paraha, saying she provoked him.

Defence lawyer Doug Blaikie said Pirini’s injuries indicated that he was attacked first. There was an intention to inflict injury rather than to kill, Mr Blaikie said.

Pirini suffered a head injury in a motorcycle accident in 1989.

In sentencing him to life imprisonment with a minimum non-parole period of 12 years, Justice Douglas White said Pirini had a history of violent offending and his actions could not be seen as self-defence.

FEMALE

Jacqueline Elaine Wihongi, 33, of Napier, was found guilty of murdering her partner of 17 years, Vivian Hirini, on June 5 last year.

The couple’s daughter was present when Wihongi fatally stabbed Hirini in the chest with a knife.

The pair had been drinking and started to argue.

There was a long history of violence between the pair. She had previously stabbed him and he had lost an eye when she hit him with a bottle.

Defence lawyer Russell Fairbrother said she “self-medicated” with alcohol after a tragic history of being raped several times and being the victim of a home invasion.

Wihongi still suffered from a brain injury after an overdose of painkillers when she was 13.

Justice John Wild said it would be manifestly unjust to sentence the mother of six to life imprisonment. She was sentenced to eight years’ jail and will be eligible to apply for parole after serving a third of her time.

She may be out in three years for murder. This was not a one off episode of self defence. She had stabbed him and partially blinded him previously.

The victim was no angel, but I do suspect if he had killed her, he would be doing life with 10 years non parole.

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