Teen steals granny's van

LYN HUMPHREYS
Last updated 13:09 13/01/2014

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High on alcohol and synthetic drugs a teenager climbed through the bathroom window at her grandmother's home and, while she slept on the couch, stole the keys to her van and her handbag. 

Karli-Jaye Tauranga-Rameka, 18, then drove the van, along with her mates  - who were driving another car she earlier stole from a Tokoroa carpark -  to Huntly.

The former Tokoroa teen was yesterday sentenced in the New Plymouth District Court  after pleading guilty to unlawfully taking two motor vehicles on November 7, burglary and breach of supervision.

Defence lawyer Josie Mooney said her client had now moved to New Plymouth to live with her parents, was remorseful and acknowledged a problem with alcohol.

Her grandmother wanted nothing to do with her.

Judge Allan Roberts said Tauranga-Rameka's offending against her own whanau was alarming.

Her grandmother was left devastated.

In her victim impact statement she said her granddaughter had no regard for her safety and had no compunction in taking from her what she wanted.

The judge said he hoped that Tauranga-Rameka apologised "and you do so quickly".

The owner of the other stolen vehicle, a teacher, told how he came from a poor background had worked hard to better himself and was disappointed the defendant and others would take his car,  his only asset.

Both vehicles were damaged. No reparation was ordered.

Judge Roberts noted Tauranga-Rameka's young age sentencing her to three months community detention with a nighttime curfew, nine months supervision and ordered her to attend alcohol and drug programmes.

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