Man guilty of 'frenzied' murder of 80-year-old

Olinale Ah You. Photo / Paul Estcourt
Olinale Ah You. Photo / Paul Estcourt

A jury has found a man guilty of murdering an 80-year-old woman by stomping on her during a "frenzied and vicious'' home invasion.

The Crown said Olinale Ah You used moderate to severe force when he attacked Yan Ping Yang in her Manurewa home in June 2008. She died five days later in hospital.

The elderly woman was found with 38 rib fractures, a broken bone in her neck, a broken sternum and a swollen face.

She was taken to hospital. Before she died she was able to give a statement to police and describe how a man grabbed her from behind before dragging her to her bedroom where he kicked and punched her.

Ah You's trial lasted two weeks at the High Court at Auckland.

He shook his head as the jury returned its unanimous verdict of guilty this afternoon. Ah You will be sentenced in February next year.

In his closing, Crown prosecutor Kieran Raftery told the jurors they were in a unique position because they had a statement that Mrs Yang gave police shortly before her death.

"Very few juries have that ability because very few victims have the opportunity to give their story before they are killed.''

He quoted from the statement: "When he stomped on me, he left his foot on my chest and I couldn't move at all, I then lost consciousness.''

Mr Raftery said Ah You could have run away and did not need to attack Mrs Yang.

"The injuries to the face tell us something about what was a frenzied and vicious attack on an 80-year-old.''

He said Ah You attacked Mrs Yang to stop her from raising the alarm and getting help.

Mr Raftery also said Ah You was a liar, as he had originally told police he had not been at Mrs Yang's house but then changed his story once his DNA was found there.

Ah You's lawyer Shane Cassidy said his client disconnected the telephones to stop Mrs Yang getting help and did not kick, punch or stomp on her.

He said the injuries to Mrs Yang were caused after Ah You put Mrs Yang in the wardrobe and tried to close the wardrobe door.

Mr Cassidy said Mrs Yang's body was half way out of the wardrobe and her body was hit repeatedly with the wardrobe door.

"If he was really intent on causing her grievous bodily harm, he could have done it with one punch.''

He said his client did not mean to cause serious harm to Mrs Yang but that is what happened.

Mr Cassidy said Mrs Yang had osteoporosis, which weakens the body. He said that medical condition showed that Ah You used only moderate force.

Justice Pamela Andrews told the jurors that they had to consider what Ah You intended when he assaulted Mrs Yang

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