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Jailed teen a 'high risk' to others

DAVID CLARKSON
Last updated 16:18 29/11/2012

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A 17-year-old Cripps gang associate has been jailed for four years six months for a Dallington dairy robbery in which the owner was stabbed four times.

Christchurch District Court Judge Paul Kellar, told the youth at his sentencing: "It gives me no pleasure having to sentence a 17-year-old to imprisonment. I am saddened on a variety of levels that you are here."

The judge said the robbery had occurred in a part of Christchurch which had been badly hit in the earthquakes and where people were already struggling.

The dairy owner would have been working hard, for long hours at his business.

He noted that this type of crime was increasing disproportionately in areas of the city that were being abandoned.

Dwayne Kararema Tutengaehe, also known as Whaanga, called out to family members who were at court: "Give my love to mum."

Defence counsel David Bunce asked for a reduction in the sentence for the youth's guilty plea and his age.

He said Tutengaehe was "pretty young to be facing such a substantial term of imprisonment" and had not been jailed before.

Tutengaehe lived near the scene of the May 20 dairy robbery.

He had pleaded guilty to that charge of wounding the dairy owner with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, and a separate street robbery.

Police said he was in the store earlier in the day and had asked the 30-year-old diary owner what time the store would close, then returned to attack the dairy owner as he was leaving in a car with his takings.

The court heard the teenager pulled the car door open and stabbed the dairy owner in the shoulder with a 30cm-long knife. The owner tried to drive off but the youth smashed the car window and stabbed him four or five more times in on his upper right arm.

The court was told he needed hospital treatment for four puncture wounds and had suffered significant emotional trauma.

Only a few days before the dairy robbery, Tutengaehe was with a group of five who confronted and assaulted two men, making them hand over recently purchased alcohol.

Judge Kellar imposed concurrent jail sentences totalling four years six months and said the teenager had a high risk of reoffending and causing harm to others.

"You were associated with the Cripps gang. No doubt this offending was inspired by the culture of violence that seems to pervade that gang, which is a great cost to young people such as yourself."

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- The Press

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