The Turangi case

Stuff reports:

The mother of a 16-year-old boy charged with a vicious sexual attack on a 5-year-old girl at a Turangi campground says she has been hounded from her home.

That should not happen, but ….

The woman yesterday said her family had been abused and had objects thrown at their house, she believed her son was merely “a suspect” and not the monster portrayed by media.

However, just moments later it was indicated, in court, that the youngster would likely plead guilty to the charges.

Saying he is just a suspect, at the same time as he is pleading guilty, is not going to go down well with locals. Contrition would go down better.

The brutality of the teen’s alleged attack on the daughter of European tourists at Club Habitat Holiday Park drew a vitriolic crowd to his first court appearance two weeks ago, but his mother yesterday stressed “he isn’t like that”.

Well, how many mothers have said that.

The Waikato Times has obtained photos of the 16-year-old drinking alcohol with friends and family and one picture with him expressing an anti-police message, from social networking site Facebook.

I’ve seen those photos also. In case he pleaded not guilty, I had refrained from mentioning them. But now he has indicated a guilty plea I can say the photos make him look exactly like someone who would commit serious crimes.

But the teen – who is charged with rape, burglary and sexual violation causing grievous bodily harm – was tidily dressed for yesterday’s appearance in the Taupo Youth Court.

I have no doubt he looked different to these photos.

He stood silently, with his head down. About a dozen supporters were present in court, and his mother read to the court a karakia he had written.

Through the prayer he asked God for forgiveness and to make him a “man without hate, anger and stress”.

I’m sorry. Call me cynical, but I seriously doubt he wrote that prayer.

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