28 Apr 2011

Couple's killer granted temporary work release

10:30 am on 28 April 2011

A man who shot dead an elderly couple in rural Waikato has been granted temporary releases to work outside prison.

Gresham Marsh, 38, is serving a life sentence for the murders of John and Josephine Harrisson at their home in Te Akau in 1994.

Marsh was 22 when he and Leith Ray, who is also serving a life sentence, killed the Harrissons.

Although the Parole Board declined Marsh's bid for freedom in December last year, it did support his wish to work outside prison. On Tuesday, the Department of Corrections approved that application.

Relatives of his victims believe Marsh to be a psychopath and doubt whether he can be rehabilitated.

Daughter Margaret Jamieson says she has never been interested in restorative justice or meeting Gresham Marsh, and cannot forgive him.

Ms Jamieson says Marsh has only showed remorse during the last couple of parole hearings and believes he is only doing this in an attempt to gain freedom.

She says Marsh is still young enough to be able to inflict violence on innocent people.

The Corrections Department says Marsh will be strictly supervised when his work placement begins in Otago in May and maintains that employment is a fundamental step in a prisoner's rehabilitation.