A woman who murdered a 3-year-old boy has had an application to appeal her conviction thrown out by the Supreme Court.
Patricia Angela Pickering, 38, was sentenced to a minimum term of 17 years for the murder of Dylan Hopeha Rimoni following a High Court trial in July 2010.
Dylan died in hospital on April 18, 2008 from massive head injuries likely to have been caused by being slammed against a hard surface like a door or wall.
In sentencing Pickering, Justice Edwin Wylie said Dylan was effectively defenceless and that Pickering abused a position of trust.
Pickering applied to the Supreme Court for a leave to appeal after the Court of Appeal dismissed her appeal.
The application was denied, in a decision released this morning.
In the application, Pickering's lawyer Frank Hogan said leave to appeal should be granted because of the way in which the judge summed up on circumstantial evidence and inferences, alleged prosecution misconduct in closing, and the Court of Appeal's refusal to admit new evidence from Dr Lammie, a British consultant neuropathologist.
"All Mr Hogan has submitted is that the Court of Appeal was wrong, but he has not articulated why the Court's detailed conclusions and reasoning are wrong,'' the Supreme Court decision said.
None of the points raised issues of general public importance, nor did they cause Justice Sian Elias, Justice William Young and Justice Robert Chambers to consider a substantial miscarriage or justice could have occurred.
Therefore, the application for leave to appeal was dismissed.
Mr Hogan also argued that evidence admitted from a Crown expert relating to scarring was inadmissible because the prosecutor, at an earlier trial which was aborted, had agreed not to lead the particular evidence.
"The Court of Appeal examined this question and determined that, in the circumstances of this case, there was nothing inappropriate about the evidence being led. No untoward prejudice arose from the change of course,'' the Supreme Court finding released today said.
- APNZBy Hana Garrett-Walker Email Hana