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WYANT - Annabelle - 02/08/2018

Parole Hearing

Under section 21(2) of the Parole Act 2002

Annabelle WYANT

Hearing: 31 July 2018

at Arohata Prison

via AVL from Christchurch Women’s Prison

Members of the Board:

  • Hon. M A Frater (Panel Convenor)
  • Ms F Pimm
  • Mr C King

Counsel:

  • Mr M Kilbride
  • Ms S Bolland

Support Persons:

  • [withheld]
  • [withheld]

DECISION OF THE BOARD

  1. Annabelle Wyant, aged 37, is serving a sentence of four years and five months imprisonment for attempted murder.  She was also sentenced to nine months, concurrent, for unlawful possession of a firearm and six months for driving with excess breath alcohol, being a third or subsequent offence.  The victim of her offending was a Mongrel Mob associate who, Ms Wyant said, had intimidated her for several years.  She wanted it to stop.  Accordingly, she made the decision to confront him, drove to his home, tooted the horn and, when he approached the car, without warning, fired a single shot at him. It lodged in his upper torso but, fortunately, did not cause fatal injuries.
  2. This is the first time that Ms Wyant has been in prison.
  3. She was sentenced on 4 December 2015.  Her sentence ends on 28 April 2020, in just under one year and eight months’ time.
  4. Ms Wyant sought to be released on parole.
  5. She has maintained the minimum security classification she has held since December 2015 and, somewhat inexplicably, her RoC*RoI score has reduced from 0.29679 to 0.1946.
  6. When she appeared before the Board in late February this year, she had just completed the Drug Treatment Programme (DTP) and had applied to transfer to a Self Care Unit, in the expectation that she would then work outside the wire, before progressing to Release to Work.
  7. Ms Wyant has been living in the Self Care villas for five months now. She has no particular inclination to work outside the wire. She does not think she needs to.
  8. She has a strong release plan.  She plans to return to live on a property in [withheld].  She will take over the care of [withheld].  Ms Wyant is obviously a good worker.  She has clear plans for occupying her time and obtaining an income.  She will manage the kina quota she inherited from [withheld] and maintain beehives on the property.  She will attend counselling in [withheld] with a woman she established a strong relationship with when she was on bail, before sentencing. And she has family support.
  9. We have the benefit of an updated psychological assessment report prepared in May this year. This records that following completion of the Kowhiritanga and DTP programmes and the relevant maintenance sessions Ms Wyant is assessed as posing a medium risk of further offending and having a moderate level of reintegrative need.
  10. Ms Wyant spoke highly of the DTP, in particular.  She said that through it she has learned appropriate ways of solving problems.  She has also increased her
    self-confidence.  She now knows to contact support people, whether the police, her probation officer or family members, if any issues arise which impinge upon her safety or that of her family.
  11. In the circumstances, we are satisfied that she will not pose an undue risk to the safety of the community if she is released on parole, provided she complies with the conditions which we will impose.
  12. They include a condition prohibiting her from possessing or consuming alcohol and illicit drugs.  She needs to be aware that an authorised person, which includes a probation officer or a police officer, can require her use of these substances to be tested or monitored.
  13. Because of the personal issues she has dealt with during her lifetime, the nature and circumstances of her index offence and having regard to the relative isolation of the place she will be released to, and the potential difficulties which could arise in her relationship [withheld], we have decided that it is appropriate to monitor her progress six months after release.  In the first instance, this will be by way of a written report from her probation officer to be filed in February next year.  If anything in the report causes the panel reviewing it concern, they can require her to attend a face to face hearing at which those matters can be discussed.
  14. Ms Wyant will be released on parole on [withheld] August and thereafter will be subject to the standard conditions set out in section 14 of the Parole Act 2002 and the following special conditions. Unless otherwise specified, all conditions will continue until her statutory release date.
  15. We have deferred the date of release for a month to allow contact with her probation officer to be re-established and rules and arrangements to be set in place.  Given Ms Wyant’s personality, it is important to do so.
  16. The special conditions are:

    (1) To attend, participate in and adhere to the rules of a maintenance group as directed by your Probation Officer.

    (2) To undertake and complete any other assessment, programme, treatment or counselling directed by a Probation Officer.

    (3) To reside at [withheld] or any other address approved in writing by a Probation Officer and not to move from that address unless you have the prior written approval of a Probation Officer.

    (4) Not to have contact or otherwise associate with the victims of your offending, directly or indirectly, unless you have the prior written approval of your Probation Officer.

    (5) Not to possess, use, or consume alcohol, controlled drugs or psychoactive substances except controlled drugs prescribed for you by a health professional.

    (6) To comply with any direction made under section 29B(2)(b) of the Parole Act 2002 to attend a hearing at a time and place to be notified to you.

Hon. M A Frater
Panel Convenor