Killer had attacked two other women

Last updated 05:00 13/08/2011

Relevant offers

Crime

Child sex offender Pierre John Parsons to be monitored for another 10 years Judge finds Lee Dixon imported 6kg of cocaine into NZ String of burglaries in Seddon biggest in years, police say How a Tauranga woman fought back through the justice system Lower Hutt sex attacker fled on bike Naked teenager took wallet when she did not get money she wanted, rape accused says Community work for man who helped rip off social club fund Dunedin man loses $9000 in bank scam Bank teller caught stuffing hundreds of dollars down her blouse on CCTV Nelson firefighters respond to second suspected arson in two days

Convicted killer John Hone Haerewa assaulted two women he had relationships with before he battered Allison McPhee to death.

Before Haerewa's trial, which ended in a verdict of guilty of murder on Thursday, prosecutors had asked for the jury to hear evidence of his "propensity" for violence against women.

However, a judge in the High Court at Wellington ruled that the two earlier incidents – in March 1994 and January 2006 – did not have enough similarity with the attack on Ms McPhee, 42, to be a kind of "trademark" that would help the jury decide if he was the killer.

The evidence could be unfairly prejudicial when balanced against what it could prove, Justice Alan MacKenzie said in a judgment suppressed until after Haerewa's trial.

Haerewa, 53, had denied killing Ms McPhee at her bedsit in Newtown, Wellington, on July 22 last year. Earlier that evening a friend had seen them kissing and cuddling, and heard Haerewa ask Ms McPhee to look after him.

The Crown alleged that later the same night Mr Haerewa, who is said to have significant brain damage from alcohol abuse and glue sniffing, broke a wooden stool over her and hit her head at least 14 times using one of the stool legs.

In the two previous incidents he had also targeted the victims' heads using what was to hand as weapons.

In the first case he broke the plastic handle of a spade on a woman. She was said to have suffered extensive injuries.

The second woman was injured when he slapped her repeatedly and attacked her with a trowel.

Justice MacKenzie had ruled out a defence attempt to call psychiatric evidence suggesting that, if Haerewa was the killer, he would have been too drunk to be able to form a murderous intent.

Ad Feedback

- The Dominion Post

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content