Dennis John BATCHELOR 19/10/2020

Parole Hearing

Under section 21(2) of the Parole Act 2002


Hearing: 19 October 2020

at Rolleston Prison

Members of the Board: Mr J Thomson (Panel Convenor), Ms F Pimm, Ms M Dodd

Support Persons: (withheld) (Case Manager)

(withheld) (Friend)


  1. Dennis John Batchelor is aged 81 and has made another appearance before the Board for consideration of release on parole.  Mr Batchelor is serving an effective sentence of 11 years’ imprisonment.  He became eligible for parole on 21 October 2018 and the sentence ends on 19 April 2024.
  2. The sentence was imposed for the rape of a female aged 12 to 16, indecent assault of a female under 12 and other sexual violation charge, unlawful sexual connection with a female aged 12 to 16.  Prior to this he had been sentenced to a term of imprisonment for a large number of offences involving the possession or making of objectionable publications.
  3. Mr Batchelor has a RoC*RoI score of 0.038.  The list of convictions now stretches to four pages on the printed list.  There is one previous term of imprisonment imposed in 1987.  This was for three counts of indecent assault on a female under 12.  There was a previous matter before this in 1967 which was indecent assault on a girl.  All Mr Batchelor's convictions are sexual offences.
  4. Mr Batchelor has a minimum security classification.  He is described as polite and compliant in the parole assessment report.  This was confirmed by the accompanying principal corrections officer.
  5. The last appearance before the Board was on 14 October 2019.  Mr Batchelor had completed the core group at Kia Marama but did not qualify for graduation.  He had made insufficient progress.  Since then he has been attending the graduates’ group and taking part in individual treatment.  In October last year he was still assessed as having some way to go.  In addition, there was no proposal for release.
  6. Today the Board has a psychologist report dated 25 September 2020.  The report reiterates that Mr Batchelor completed Kia Marama in June 2019.  It underlines that he had not developed adequate insight to graduate.  A review was undertaken in July this year and it was assessed that he has now made sufficient progress to graduate.  This is in light of progress in the graduates’ group and in individual treatment.
  7. The psychologist assesses Mr Batchelor as being at high risk of sexual offending.  In the past his behaviour has indicated limited motivation to address factors related to his offending.
  8. If released, Mr Batchelor proposed to live at the (withheld) in (withheld).  He has been accepted for this.
  9. He has indicated that he will return to live with his wife once his release conditions have been completed.  However, they will not be living together as a married couple and rather as flatmates.  (withheld) has visited him a few times each year during the sentence.  She has taken no interest in his progress in treatment or the offending.  She has little interest in the things which might keep him safe.
  10. The Department of Corrections despite saying that Mr Batchelor has been accepted for the (withheld) expresses some doubt as to the suitability.
  11. We have been made aware that there may be an application for an extended supervision order at some stage.  This may change the attitude of the (withheld) towards having him at their (withheld).
  12. The proposal for release to the (withheld) can at best be only temporary.  The sentence still has three years six months remaining.  The Board must be concerned about Mr Batchelor's risk during that period.  We are not satisfied that the proposal for a temporary accommodation solution with the (withheld) is sufficient to manage Mr Batchelor's risk to the safety of the community.  As a consequence, parole is declined.  Mr Batchelor will be scheduled to be seen again by the Board in April next year and no later than 30 April 2021.

Mr J Thomson

Panel Convenor