8 Apr 2016

At least 10 years' jail for fatal stabbing after party

2:59 pm on 8 April 2016

A man with paranoid schizophrenia who fatally stabbed a young mother after a drunken party will serve a minimum of 10 years in prison before he can be eligible for parole.

Roy Charles Mataki, 43, was found guilty in February of murdering Sherena Williams, 24, by knifing her in the neck in Upper Hutt in March last year.

Mataki sat impassively in the dock in the High Court in Wellington today while Ms Williams' sister, Anita Quin, described the devastating effect of the murder on her and her family.

"You have broken my heart, Roy, you have broken all of our hearts. If you had just walked away my sister would still be alive, I will never be the same because of your actions. My family and I have endured so much after losing Sherena."

Ms Quin said her sister's daughters were broken by her death.

In sentencing him today, Justice Collins told Mataki there were several aggravating factors in his offending, including the fact he was carrying a military-style knife at the time.

However, he said Mataki's serious mental illness - while it was was not a factor in his offending - would make a longer prison sentence a more severe penalty.

Justice Collins said taking that into account, along with Mataki's genuine remorse, he was reducing the non-parole period to 10 years from a starting point of 11.