Devo Gray Te Aho
Hawkes Bay Today story 23rd August 2002
A nineteen-year-old freezing worker has been jailed for 10 years for raping a 75-year-old Dannevirke woman. Napier District Court was told Devo Gray Te Aho knocked on the woman's door about 9pm on June 29. When she went to the door and asked who was there, Te Aho answered in a girl's voice. When the woman opened the door slightly, Te Aho forced his way in, grabbed her by the throat, forced her into the lounge and raped her. He then threatened her, demanded money and fled. The woman called the police and soon after found Te Aho's wallet on the floor. Within 24 hours, Te Aho surrendered to police.
Defence counsel Tony Snell said there were several mitigating factors to the credit of Te Aho. He was extremely remorseful, had an unblemished character and had not been in trouble before. The offence happened after he celebrated his birthday with alcohol and drugs. He had strong family support and had been upset enough to be placed on suicide watch while in custody. Te Aho had admitted it was an abhorrent crime, Mr Snell said. Crown prosecutor Russell Collins said the fear the crime instilled in the community had to be taken into account. Mr Collins said the courage the woman had shown was incredible.
In sentencing Te Aho, Judge Geoff Rea said he was bewildered by Te Aho's actions and references from family and friends had given no indication he was capable of such a crime. Judge Rea also praised the strong character of the woman. "The level of strength in this lady is seldom seen in people of this age and situation," he said. "It is an enormous credit to her." Judge Rea said there were aggravating features which put the crime at the top end of the scale -- the violence, the victim's vulnerability, the forced entry and the impact it had on the community. But he was reluctant to accept the crime was premeditated. Te Aho was sentenced to 10 years' jail for rape and five years for burglary, with a minimum non-parole period of six years.
Date of Birth
Raped a 75 year old Dannevirke woman after invading her home in June 2002
Also possession of an offensive weapon
Sentenced to 10 years with a 6 year minimum non-parole period in August 2002
Released October 2009, was placed back in custody shortly afterwards
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