Matiu James Teepa
From a Christchurch Press story 29th January 2004
A four-year minimum non-parole jail term has been handed down to a man who subjected an intoxicated woman to a degrading sexual attack in a backpackers' hostel. Matiu James Teepa, 24, was jailed for seven years by Christchurch District Court Judge Stephen Erber after he admitted charges of sexual violation, attempted rape and kidnapping related to the prolonged attack and detaining of a woman he met in a Christchurch bar. The judge said Teepa had invited the victim back to his room at the hostel, where she refused sex. But he had sexually assaulted her, at one point trying to strangle her. He was physically unable to have full sex, but had forced her into accepting and performing oral sex. At one stage she tried to run, but, as a much bigger person, Teepa had forced her back into his room, meanwhile telling her it would go badly if she went to police.
"During the offending, you committed three serious offences," the judge said. Sexual intercourse did not occur, largely due to Teepa's inability and the victim's resistance, but it was close to that. The victim suffered many cuts and bruises. Lawyer Rupert Glover said Teepa was deeply remorseful and had pleaded guilty immediately. He had suffered a traumatic history, having experienced sexual abuse himself. Teepa had said on the night memories all came flooding back under the influence of alcohol, and the events happened. Teepa had already started rehabilitative treatment and was very motivated to continue it in prison. He was not lost to society and would recover his equilibrium if helped, Glover said. Prosecutor Jane Farish said aggravating factors were overwhelming in the case.
The attack was violent, degrading and predatory on a vulnerable victim, and Teepa had been on bail at the time on unrelated matters. A minimum non-parole period was called for, she said. The judge said that while Teepa had an alcohol problem and had been drinking at the time, that could not be seen as mitigating. Matters for the victim had been made worse because she suffered sexual abuse when young but a victim impact report showed she seemed a strong woman, and appeared philosophical. Aggravating was the significant level of violence, that the victim was drunk and vulnerable, the length of the episode and that there seemed to be a predatory element. On the mitigating side, Teepa's prompt plea of guilty supported his remorse, and he had regard to his background. A starting point of 10 years was appropriate. With full credit for mitigating factors, the sentence would be seven years with a minimum non-parole period of four years, the judge said.
Date of Birth
Unlawful detention, sexual violation and attempted rape of a Christchurch woman in 2003/2004
Previous convictions for indecent assault, theft and breaching bail
Sentenced to 7 years with a 4 year minimum non-parole period in January 2004
Unsuccessfully appealed this sentence in July 2004
Released November 2010
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