Justin GARTHWAITE - 16/05/2019

Parole Hearing

Under section 21(2) of the Parole Act 2002


Hearing: 16 May 2019

at Rimutaka Prison

via AVL to New Zealand Parole Board, Wellington

Members of the Board:

  • Judge E Paul – Panel Convenor
  • Mr B McMurray
  • Assoc Prof. P Brinded


  1. Justin Garthwaite again appears for parole consideration on a life sentence for the murder and rape of an elderly lady back in 1996.
  2. Prior to this hearing, we had met with the victim’s family. In summary form, we conveyed to Mr Garthwaite their concerns that they still opposed his release, that they were concerned he did not demonstrate any remorse for his offending and that on any release they did not want him living in [withheld] where the majority of their family continued to live. They were also concerned about his lack of support and that he appeared to be a loner. Finally, that their family continued to suffer as the result of the loss of their mother.
  3. Mr Garthwaite responded that he could understand the victims very strong feelings towards him.
  4. When last seen by the Board in August 2017 it was noted he had completed the Adult Sex Offender Treatment Programme, that he was in self‑care and had commenced Release to Work. The Board reported then that this man required more time on Release to Work and safety planning and preparing a robust release proposal.
  5. Mr Garthwaite comes to the Board today supported by [withheld], a reintegration agency in the community.
  6. He has applied for accommodation in [withheld]. They do not have any beds for him at this time. There may be accommodation for him in 2020.
  7. He is currently employed by [withheld] and does that without incident. He is spoken of as a compliant prisoner and good employee.
  8. We have the psychologist’s report from April of this year. That records that Mr Garthwaite has now started working on his safety plan. That safety plan is directed at the factors relating to his offending, but at present he is still a moderate high risk of sexual violent offences, that he will require a moderate to high level of reintegration needs and that he needs to continue to build supports in the community.
  9. Mr Garthwaite is realistic that he is not ready for release and that he does not have a sufficiently robust release proposal.
  10. Accordingly, parole is declined today. Mr Garthwaite should continue to work with psychological services to prepare and complete his safety plan. That plan should be shared with his supports.
  11. He should also continue to undertake Release to Work and demonstrate in a less structured environment he has the ability to apply his skills and remain offence‑free.
  12. We ask that Mr Garthwaite be seen again in 12 months and not later than May 2020.

Judge E Paul
Panel Convenor