12 Mar 2018

Social workers 'did best' placing teen with Mongrel Mob member

From Morning Report, 6:12 am on 12 March 2018

Oranga Tamariki is refusing to criticise staff at its predecessor Child, Youth and Family, who placed a troubled 14-year-old boy into the home of a Mongrel Mob associate. The boy's family believed he would be housed at a motel for several days. Instead, the boy ended up on a crime spree with the gang associate, involving multiple burglaries and culminating in a police chase which ended when the drunk driver crashed into a power pole. RNZ reporter Timothy Brown broke the story in December 2016 and has obtained a review of Child, Youth and Family's decision making, under the Official Information Act. He asked Oranga Tamariki's care task force general manager, Peter Whitcombe, why the review took a year to complete, and whether it was carried out only because the case had received media attention.