Trent Owen N. HAPUKU 13/7/2020
Under section 21(2) of the Parole Act 2002
Trent Owen N. HAPUKU
Hearing: 13 July 2020
at Tongariro Prison by AVL Wellington
Members of the Board: Ms K Snook – Panel Convener, Ms K Coutts, Mr S A M Perry
DECISION OF THE BOARD
- Trent Owen Hapuku, 31, appeared for the further consideration of a short period of time on parole or for the setting of his conditions of his release at his statutory release date. He is serving a sentence of nine years’ imprisonment for the manslaughter of the five month old son of his girlfriend.
- Mr Hapuku has a RoC*RoI of 0.37363, he is on a minimum prison security classification, and has a statutory release date of 25 September 2020.
- Earlier this year a Board gave Mr Hapuku a date for release on parole of 30 March 2020. That decision of the Board was revoked prior to his release by a Board decision dated 26 March 2020. His accommodation at the (withheld) was no longer available because of the lockdown for COVID-19.
- Mr Hapuku was seen again by a Board on 7 April 2020 but there was still no confirmed accommodation available for him.
- The Board now has confirmation from the (withheld) (a letter dated 19 May 2020) that an address at (withheld) is available for Mr Hapuku.
- We note that Mr Hapuku has completed the Dependency Treatment Programme and 22 sessions one-to-one with a psychologist. He has developed a safety plan. His whānau are well aware of the plan. He has presented the plan at a whānau hui. The most recent hui was in December 2019. His whānau remain in support. Although they are largely in the (withheld) Mr Hapuku said today that he does have some whānau support close to where he will be residing. He said he has given his sister, who is one of those supporters, a copy of his safety plan although she was not at the whānau hui.
- It is not appropriate that Mr Hapuku return to the Hawke's Bay. He accepts that. This is because of victim issues. Mr Hapuku told the Board today that he hopes to settle in the region where he is being released. Importantly he accepts that he is not to be around children.
- Mr Hapuku spoke well to the Board. He said that over his time in prison he has grown up. He knows now not only what his high risk situations are but also that he needs to ask for support. He also accepts that he needs a structured day. He has learnt that in prison. He has been enjoying his work on the internal farm work party. He said he missed that work when he was in lockdown for COVID-19. On release he will have the support of the (withheld) and they will assist him not only with future accommodation but also to obtain employment.
- There is some concern about Mr Hapuku’s (withheld) at times. There is a special condition which would require him to attend meetings with (withheld) if his probation officer considers that necessary.
- The Board is satisfied that Mr Hapuku can be released for a short period of time on parole without posing an undue risk. We acknowledge that this was very serious offending. However Mr Hapuku has completed treatment in prison to reduce his risk of reoffending and he has informed support in the community. He is to be released to an area well away from the index offending and residual risk can be managed with appropriate special conditions.
- Mr Hapuku will be released on parole on 29 July 2020 on the standard conditions and on the special conditions set out below.
- As there is a special condition which prevents Mr Hapuku from possessing or consuming alcohol or drugs he was advised that he can the subject of testing by an authorised person of his compliance with that condition.
- Given the concerns expressed about Mr Hapuku’s (withheld)we are also adding a special condition that he is, subject to section 15(5) of the Parole Act 2002, to take any medication prescribed by a health professional in accordance with any directions given by the health professional.
- The psychologist in the assessment dated 15 May 2019 recommended that the relevant special condition preclude contact by Mr Hapuku with young people under the age of 16 (not under 12 as proposed in the special conditions). We have amended that special condition accordingly and Mr Hapuku was comfortable with that change.
- All conditions will remain in place for six months following Mr Hapuku’s statutory release date of 25 September 2020.
- The special conditions are:
(1) Not to have contact or otherwise associate, with any victim of your offending, [including previous offending] directly or indirectly, unless you have the prior written approval of a Probation Officer.
(2) Not to enter Hawkes Bay as defined by a Probation Officer in writing unless you have the prior written approval of a Probation Officer.
(3) To submit to electronic monitoring as directed by a Probation Officer in order to monitor your compliance with any conditions relating to your whereabouts.
(4) To attend a psychological assessment and attend, participate in and complete any recommended treatment as directed by the Probation Officer.
(5) To reside at the (withheld), and not move from that, or any other approved address unless you have the prior written approval of a Probation Officer.
(6) To disclose to a Probation Officer, at the earliest opportunity, details of any intimate relationship which commences, resumes, or terminates.
(7) Not to have contact or otherwise associate, with a person under the age of 16 years, directly or indirectly unless you have the prior written approval of a Probation Officer, or unless you are under the supervision and in the presence of an adult approved in writing by a Probation Officer.
(8) Subject to section 15(5) of the Parole Act 2002, to take any medication prescribed by a health professional in accordance with any directions given by the health professional.
(9) To comply with the requirements of electronic monitoring and provide unimpeded access to your approved residence by a probation officer and/or representatives of the monitoring company for the purpose of maintaining the electronic monitoring equipment as directed by a probation officer.
(10) To attend an alcohol and drug assessment, and attend, participate in and complete any treatment or counselling directed by a probation officer.
(11) Not to possess, use, or consume alcohol, controlled drugs or psychoactive substances except controlled drugs prescribed for you by a health professional.
(12) To attend appointments with a mental health provider as directed by a probation officer.
Ms K Snook,