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Teacher, 52, charged with pensioner's murder, appears in court

Author
Ethan Griffiths,
Publish Date
Tue, 13 Feb 2024, 11:05am
A 52-year-old teacher appeared in the Wellington District Court today, charged with the murder of pensioner Helen Gregory. Photo / Ethan Griffiths
A 52-year-old teacher appeared in the Wellington District Court today, charged with the murder of pensioner Helen Gregory. Photo / Ethan Griffiths

Teacher, 52, charged with pensioner's murder, appears in court

Author
Ethan Griffiths,
Publish Date
Tue, 13 Feb 2024, 11:05am

A woman has appeared in court this morning charged with the murder of Khandallah pensioner Helen Gregory.

While her name is suppressed, it can be revealed she is a 52-year-old teacher.

She appeared in the Wellington District Court this morning for just a few minutes. She had her head bowed for almost all of the hearing and showed little emotion.

Judge Tim Black remanded her in custody until her next appearance and granted interim name suppression.

Gregory was found dead at her home in Baroda St, Khandallah, shortly before midnight on January 24. A post-mortem revealed her death was the result of a violent act.

Police searched a Porirua landfill on Friday and Saturday, attempting to locate evidence.

Police said it’s believed a person of interest in the investigation disposed of items in the hours after Gregory died, which were later taken to the landfill.

Police scour the Porirua landfill for evidence relating to the murder of 79-year-old Helen Gregory. Photo / SuppliedPolice scour the Porirua landfill for evidence relating to the murder of 79-year-old Helen Gregory. Photo / Supplied 

Detective Senior Sergeant Tim Leitch earlier said searches of specific areas within the landfill could “significantly advance” the inquiry. 

Police said a search of the accused’s property was carried out yesterday. 

Neighbours of Gregory’s described her to RNZ as a keen gardener, and a quiet woman who kept to herself. 

Police say Helen Gregory met a violent end at the property on Baroda St. Photo / RNZPolice say Helen Gregory met a violent end at the property on Baroda St. Photo / RNZ 

One neighbour, who did not want to be identified, told RNZ Gregory, who had gone to school with their aunt, spent a lot of her time gardening. 

The amount of gardening she did and the layout and size of her hilly property helped keep her fit and out of a retirement home, they said. 

Ethan Griffiths covers crime and justice stories nationwide for Open Justice. He joined NZME in 2020, previously working as a regional reporter in Whanganui and South Taranaki. 

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