1 Aug 2020

Man jailed for incest freed on parole after admitting fault

9:10 am on 1 August 2020

By Rob Kidd of Otago Daily Times

An Oamaru man who got his daughter pregnant has been granted parole after saying he no longer blamed her for their sexual relationship.

Coat of Arms inside the High Court in Rotorua

Photo: RNZ / Claire Eastham-Farrelly

The man in his 50s - whose name is permanently suppressed - was jailed for three years, four months on three charges of incest when he appeared in the Dunedin District Court in late 2018.

The court, on that occasion, heard the defendant was convinced his daughter should be charged because she initiated the intimate contact, he claimed.

It was not driven by sexual arousal on his part, he said.

But at a Parole Board hearing last month, the man now accepted he was the one at fault.

Despite the prisoner having more than seven months of his sentence remaining, panel convener Judge David Mather said his risk could be managed in the community.

Parole was granted and the defendant was released last week.

While the man had no previous sex convictions, he had a significant criminal history, the board heard.

It was revealed for the first time that he was convicted of manslaughter in Australia and served five years' imprisonment there.

The defendant was assessed as a low-moderate risk of reoffending.

At sentencing, the court heard the victim became pregnant twice within six months, though only one of the pregnancies could definitively be attributed to her father.

The sexual abuse began shortly after the victim moved back home in April 2017, court documents showed.

Over the next seven months, the incest happened as often as once a week.

The acts would be committed in secluded areas of North Otago, the victim said, and once occurred at a Dunedin motel.

The Parole Board heard the man was still regularly in contact with three of his children, though they had not visited him during his incarceration.

"He has had no contact with the daughter who was the victim of his offending, and accepts that no contact with her is appropriate in any way," Judge Mather said.

While the location of the prisoner's release was withheld, the board expressed some concern about his lack of support there.

He would need the close attention of his probation officer, Judge Mather said.

His conditions of release included:

  • To live at an address approved by Probation.
  • To comply with the tenancy rules at the accommodation.
  • To inform Probation of changes in employment.
  • Not to possess alcohol or non-prescription drugs.
  • To attend a psychological assessment and any treatment following.
  • Not to contact victims of offending.
  • Not to leave defined area as specified by Probation.
  • To attend a reintegration meeting.
  • To inform Probation of any intimate relationships.

- This story was first published on the Otago Daily Times website