Edward Albert McELROY - 07/12/2015
Under section 21(1) of the Parole Act 2002
Edward (Eddie) Albert McELROY
Hearing: 7 December 2015 via AVL from [Withheld]
Members of the Board:
- Hon. M A Frater – Panel Convenor
- Dr J Skipworth
- Ms K Snook
- Mr B McMurray
DECISION OF THE BOARD
1. 41 year old Edward Albert McElroy is serving a life sentence of imprisonment for murder and finite terms of imprisonment for manslaughter, rape and arson.
2. He appeared today following a two year postponement order made on 23 July 2014 with effect from 31 January that year. That order was made to reflect the time needed for Mr McElroy to complete the necessary interventions to address his offending and subsequent reintegration.
3. To his credit Mr McElroy has used the last year or so profitably. From July 2014 until 22 January 2015, he participated in seven sessions of individual psychological treatment. He then transferred to [Withheld], where he is currently housed. He began the Adult Sex Offender Treatment Programme there on 23 February this year and he is due to graduate in a week’s time.
4. Mr McElroy spoke to us at length about the benefits he has gained from the Adult Sex Offender Treatment Programme and what he has learnt from it. He said that when he started the course he thought he would do it just to tick the required boxes, but it has taught him how to be honest about his offending and to address emotional issues. He said that he thought that his offending was an emotional act, but he now realises that he planned everything.
5. He did not seek parole today. He acknowledged that, on the best case scenario, it will take some two to three years before he can safely be released.
6. He was asked whether he addressed the violent aspects of his offending during the programme. He thought that he had. However, given that he has spent over 23 years in custody, he accepts that his reintegration into society needs to be taken slowly and carefully.
7. Although he has the ongoing support of a former tutor [Withheld]`, he does not have any other support in the community. He has long since lost contact with his whānau. He accepts that he will need to build support. He also accepts that he will need to be tested in a variety of situations and over time. He wants to start by transferring back to the camps and gaining further employment skills, whether in the kitchen or on the farm. He would also like to be given the opportunity for temporary releases, escorted initially and then with his sponsors, leading eventually to Release to Work.
8. We would support that. However we are not sure at this stage whether Mr McElroy is in fact ready for reintegration. We do not have a current psychological report on his progress in the treatment programme and his ongoing risk. Obviously we need that. It may well be that the further rehabilitative interventions are required. We would also benefit from a report on Mr McElroy’s engagement in the programme, whether he has in fact changed in the dramatic way that he presents, or whether the change is simply that he has gained intellectual understanding of his offending and his situations.
9. We note also that a PCL: SV assessment has not been undertaken. It should be.
10. Parole is declined today. Mr McElroy will be scheduled to be seen again in November 2016. A full psychological report is required for that hearing. We would, of course, support any recommended interventions, whether rehabilitative or reintegrative, in the meantime.
Hon. M A Frater