Under section 21(1) of the Parole Act 2002
Richard Wade BOWMAN
Hearing: 3 March 2017 At [Withheld] Via AVL to New Zealand Parole Board
Members of the Board:
DECISION OF THE BOARD
1. Richard Wade Bowman is making his first appearance before the Board on a sentence of two years six months’ imprisonment for kidnapping, assault with intent to injure, male assaults female and threatening to kill. He became eligible for parole on today’s date and he has a statutory release date of 1 November 2018.
2. Mr Bowman has a security classification of low/medium and a RoC*RoI of .76755. He has quickly accumulated some 22 convictions since 2011, the majority arising recently in the context of the breakup of two relationships. The index offending related to a series of assaults and abuse of his partner who was exposed to actual and threatened violence as well as being unlawfully detained for a period.
3. Mr Bowman has caused no issues with respect to his conduct and compliance in prison. The Parole Assessment Report refers to his being sentence planned to attend the Special Treatment Unit Rehabilitation Programme. He was offered the opportunity to do so in February but declined on the basis that he would await the outcome of today’s hearing.
4. Mr Bowman was represented at the hearing by [Withheld], who appeared on behalf of [Withheld] who had made written submissions in advance of the hearing. Counsel submitted that having regard to Mr Bowman’s history, that the Board may wish to seek a psychological assessment and consider either individual counselling, or for him to return to the Board after a short period. She submitted he should not be required to attend the STURP.
5. We note Mr Bowman has completed the Domestic Violence Programme in prison [Withheld]. In the course of the hearing, however, he was unable to articulate the factors that led him to make threats and to offer violence to his partner. At best his understanding of the reasons for his offending could be described as superficial.
6. The Board accepts the submission made by counsel that Mr Bowman should be assessed by the psychologist before embarking on the next stage of his rehabilitation. Whether it is the STURP, or a medium intensity programme, we leave to the prison to determine on the basis of psychological advice.
7. Upon release Mr Bowman is proposing to live with his parents in [Withheld]. He was supported today by [Withheld]. The release address has been assessed as suitable.
8. The Board requests an early psychological assessment. Thereafter, we support Mr Bowman completing whatever rehabilitation activity is identified for him. His reasons for not wishing to attend STURP were not persuasive so far as the Board is concerned. If the psychologist is of the view that that is the appropriate intervention he would be well advised to take advantage of the opportunity.
9. Parole today is declined. Until an appropriate intervention is completed the Board could not be satisfied that Mr Bowman’s release would not pose an undue risk to the safety of the community. He will be scheduled to return to the Board in 12 months’ time by 28 February 2018. For that hearing the Board requests the psychological report referred to.
Mr N Trendle