14 Feb 2009

No prison for killer of tagger - Sensible Sentencing Trust

5:57 am on 14 February 2009

The Sensible Sentencing Trust says a man who stabbed a teenage tagger to death should not have been sent to prison.

Bruce Emery, 50, was on Friday sentenced to four years and three months for the manslaughter of Pihema Cameron, 15, whom he caught spray-painting his property last year.

The Cameron family is furious at the sentence, likening it to a slap on the wrist.

Sensible Sentencing Trust spokesperson Garth McVicar says the family has to take some responsibility for what happened too.

He says a 15 year old should never have been allowed to roam the streets, and Emery should have been sentenced to home detention.

During the trial, the defence argued that Emery was trying to protect himself and that what happened was an accident.

But the Crown said after years of having his property tagged, Emery lost control and was venting anger. The defence applied for home detention but the judge ruled otherwise.