9 Mar 2010

Parole denied for killer of Johnsonville father

4:35 pm on 9 March 2010

Convicted murderer Phillip Smith has accepted a Parole Board ruling that it is still too early for him to be released from prison.

Smith was given a life sentence in 1996, for murdering the father of a boy whom he had been sexually abusing.

The victim was stabbed to death at his home in the Wellington suburb of Johnsonville.

As well as murder, Smith's jail sentence also covers sexual abuse, aggravated robbery, kidnapping and an extortion conviction.

The Parole Board says Smith has challenged a psychological assessment which places his risk of further offending as very high.

The board notes that Smith wants to begin an intensive rehabilitation programme but is frustrated he hasn't been given a definite start date.

Smith will next appear before the board in a year's time, although it says that is not an indication he is nearing release.