Jamie Morton

Jamie Morton is science reporter at the NZ Herald.

Inquest held into Scottish tourist's murder

Karen Aim's parents are never likely to know why their daughter was murdered, according to the coroner. Photo / supplied
Karen Aim's parents are never likely to know why their daughter was murdered, according to the coroner. Photo / supplied

The parents of murdered Scottish tourist Karen Aim will likely never know what drove a teenager to brutally kill their only daughter nearly four years ago.

A coronial inquest into the 27-year-old's death in January 2008, was held in Taupo this morning.

Taupo CIB detective sergeant Anthony Manunui, who was second in charge of the investigation, read a summary of facts retracing how Ms Aim, from the Orkney Islands, was murdered by 14-year-old Jahche Te Manawa Kaha Broughton while walking back to her flat in the early hours of January 17.

Mr Manunui told the court how Broughton must have seen Ms Aim walking as he was smashing windows with a baseball bat at Taupo Nui-a-Tia College.

Broughton, riding a distinctive vintage style bike, followed Ms Aim to a street corner about 50m from her house and struck her with the bat.

She died soon after receiving a heavy blow to the front of her face, while she was lying on the ground.

Broughton was arrested less than a week later after police recovered the blood-stained bat, and a digital camera and the burned remains of a handbag belonging to Ms Aim.

Broughton is presently serving a 12 1/2 year sentence after pleading guilty to murder, as well as one count wounding with intent to cause causing grievous bodily harm to another woman.

In court today, Mr Manunui was unable to answer Coroner Dr Wallace Bain's questions as to whether Broughton was under the influence of drugs and alcohol when he murdered Ms Aim.

Dr Bain described the act as "shocking" and said it was "very generous" Ms Aim's father, Brian Aim, still saw New Zealand as a "very beautiful" country.

Dr Bain told the court how parental supervision was a major underlying factor in the murder, and that better supervision could stem crime in society as a whole.

He reserved his findings, which are expected to be released within a fortnight.

- NZ Herald

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