Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Police could have prevented murder, so could have DHB

“It is time the psychiatric profession took some ownership of these ever increasing tragedies’ and were made accountable when they fail” Graeme Moyle

Police could have prevented murder, so could have DHB.

Police could have prevented murder, independent report finds.

Police could have prevented the death of Diane White by mental health patient Christine Morris, the Independent Police Conduct Authority has found in a decision released today.

Christine Morris was a voluntary inpatient receiving respite care in the Henry Rongomau Bennett Centre in Hamilton, up until she went absent without leave two hours before killing Diane White in January 2010.

Morris was sentenced to life imprisoned last April with a 10 year non-parole period. She is serving her sentence as special patient in Auckland’s Mason Clinic, a regional Forensic Mental Health Hospital for offenders with serious mental health issues.

Sensible Sentencing Trust spokesman on mental health issues, Graeme Moyle, is dismayed that the Police feel they need to take responsibility for Ms Whites murder.

“Certainly there were shortcomings by the Police in their response to this incident” Mr Moyle said, “however, had clinicians at the Henry Bennett Centre carried out effective risk assessments on this woman and kept her secure, this murder would have been prevented long before the Police became involved”.

“Christine Morris had communicated her intentions to kill Diane White on several previous occasions; she had also threatened to kill a case worker involved in removing a child from her care. These are all indications of potential risk and should have been dealt with appropriately. They were not, allowing Ms Morris the opportunity to bludgeon Diane White to death”.

“The Police have been made the scapegoats for poor clinical judgment and although they have taken it on the chin, should never have been placed in that position in the first place” Mr Moyle said.

“That Morris was a voluntary patient at all is remarkable, considering her severe mental illness complicated in this case by profound deafness. She was not unknown to mental health services, having received treatment for schizophrenia for the best part of 30 years”.

Following Morris’ sentence the Waikato District Health Board issued a statement saying that no one could reasonably have predicted this tragedy.

“That is nonsense” said Mr Moyle, “this death was totally predictable and preventable and it is a disgrace that they pretend it to be otherwise. The most effective means of predicting violence is previous violence or threats of violence”.

“The DHB commissioned an investigation into the circumstances leading up to Diane Whites murder but will not make that report available to the public. The Police have put their hand up for their part in this tragedy, it’s time the Waikato DHB did the same’.

“It is time the psychiatric profession took some ownership of these ever increasing tragedies’ and were made accountable when they fail” Mr Moyle said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Minister of Finance: Plan Shows $100 Billion Infrastructure Projects

Finance Minister Bill English has today launched the Government’s Ten Year Capital Intentions Plan (CIP) which shows a pipeline of $100.9 billion worth of infrastructure projects over the next decade. More>>


Werewolf: Safe Landings Gordon Campbell on the safety challenge to the Wellington runway extension.

The safety-related legal challenge revolves around the size of the 90 metre long Runway End Safety Area (RESA) being proposed for the runway extension. More>>


Environment Commissioner: We Need To Work Together On Climate Change And Farming

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.” More>>


NZ Super Fund: Seeking To Put A Market Price On Climate Change

Oct. 19 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it will devise a set of rules to assess investment winners and losers under climate change, a strategy that could rule out fossil fuels or producers such as current portfolio member Exxon ... More>>


Rejuvenation: Parata Will Not Contest 2017 Election

Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced that she will not be contesting the next election. She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year. More>>

Prisons Grow: Government Approves Plans For Increased Prison Capacity

Despite significant progress in reducing crime the number of prisoners has increased faster than projected. This is because the proportion of offenders charged with serious crimes has risen, meaning more people are being remanded in custody and serving more of their sentences in prison. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Plastic Bag Activism, And Street Harassment

Amusing to see the Act Party experiencing another outbreak of young fogey-ism. What has aroused the ire of Act Leader David Seymour this time is the introduction of a Greens private members bill to the ballot process, calling for a 15 cents levy on plastic bags to reduce pollution. More>>


Unclear Weapons: US Navy Ship Cleared To Visit NZ For Navy's 75th

United States Navy ship, the USS Sampson, has been given clearance to visit New Zealand next month by Prime Minister John Key... “The process for considering the visit by the USS Sampson is the same as that used for all ships attending the International Naval Review." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news