Hamilton teens who stabbed man found not guilty of murder

Author
Belinda Feek, NZ Herald,
Section
Crime,
Publish Date
Thursday, 11 October 2018, 3:35p.m.
Norman Kingi died after being fatally stabbed in the heart. A jury has today returned its verdicts in relation to the two murder accused. (Photo / Supplied)

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A Hamilton jury has returned their verdicts in relation to two teen girls facing murder charges.

The 16-year-old has been found guilty of the manslaughter of Norman Kingi on July 28 last year. A jury found her not guilty of murder

Her 14-year-old co-accused has been cleared, having been found not guilty.

Kingi and his partner Vicki Lee Reihana busted the two girls, and a 12-year-old girl, breaking into their car which was parked outside their home on Ranui St on July 28 last year.

After a brief confrontation the older girl stabbed Kingi in the heart with a knife before fleeing with the 14-year-old.

The 16-year-old admitted stabbing him but claimed it was self-defence.

The jury was sent to begin their deliberations at midday before returning three hours later with their verdicts.

Earlier, Justice Timothy Brewer explained how self defence worked in terms of the law.

He told the jury of five men and seven women they had to put themselves in the shoes of the accused and whether she was justified in stabbing Kingi.

Not only that, if they did find it was a justified action, they then had to decide whether the degree of force was reasonable given the circumstances the accused believed them to be.

Her defence counsel, Ron Mansfield, submitted that she felt Kingi was a threat – he was drunk, angry and advancing on her and her instinctive reaction to protect herself was to pull out the knife and stab him.

However, the Crown said the accused's actions were not reasonable and Kingi was simply in her way when she tried to rescue her friend so stabbed him out of anger, rather than fear.

The older accused had options that night, including running away either before or after the younger accused hit Kingi on the head with a screwdriver or pulled the knife and simply threatened him with it, rather than plunging it into his chest.

As for what was a reasonable amount of force, that could only be decided by the jury, the judge said

The 16-year-old was convicted by Justice Brewer and remanded in custody for sentencing.

 

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