Youth jailed for savage attack


A 16-year-old is to spend five years in jail for his part in an attack on Rotorua youth residence staff by three inmates who stole the facility’s keys and escaped.
Sentencing the teenager in the Rotorua District Court on Friday, Judge Phillip Cooper noted that, while on the run, the group forced their way into a “plucky” 91-year-old Rotorua woman’s home, knocking her out of the wheelchair, leaving her bruised and sore.
However he said the law only allowed for him to sentence the youth on the aggravated wounding charge he faced in relation to the youth facility escape on November 17 last year.
A Youth Court judge had declined to deal with him, sending him on to the District Court Before sentencing Judge Cooper watched CCTV footage of the attack on the facility staff that were shoved into a door, kicked, punched, knocked to the ground and stomped on, as demands were made for their keys.
He said the trio hatched an escape plan that included drawing a diagram of the facility’s layout.
The youth had feigned a headache, asking one of the men to get him Panadol and when he returned he and a fellow staffer were attacked. Both had been admitted to hospital and continued to have lasting effects from their beatings.
Judge Cooper ruled the youth’s name not be published in the interest of justice and his possible future rehabilitation.
He is to spend time in youth custody until he turns 17 and becomes eligible to go to an adult jail.
One co-offender has been dealt with by the youth court, the other has yet to appear in the Manukau District Court. NZN

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