Parties would change three-strikes law

Stuff.co.nz 1 May 2013
Labour, the Greens and the Maori Party all say they would repeal or alter the three-strikes legislation after the issuing of a second strike to Hastings man Elijah Whaanga. Whaanga, 21, was sentenced to two years’ jail and issued with his second strike by Judge Tony Adeane in the Napier District Court on April 18 after pleading guilty to two charges of aggravated robbery. The offences involved Whaanga and an accomplice attacking victims on two occasions last August. In one, Whaanga took a skateboard, hat and cigarette lighter from the victim after trying unsuccessfully to remove the victim’s jacket. The second involved Whaanga kicking the victim in his leg and taking his hat and cellphone. Aggravated robbery, which carries a maximum sentence of 14 years’ prison, can involve a robbery that causes the victim grievous bodily harm, robbery while armed with an offensive weapon, or robbery with an accomplice. Whaanga, who now has 20 convictions as an adult, was given his first strike in 2010 for a violent aggravated robbery for which he was jointly charged. He must now serve his sentence of two years without parole. If he is issued with a third strike, a judge must impose the maximum penalty without parole unless the court believes that would be manifestly unjust. http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/politics/8616330/Parties-would-change-three-strikes-law

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