Luke Tipene killing: Vincent Skeen jailed for five years

Vincent Skeen has been sentenced to five years and two months in jail for the killing of Luke Tipene. Photo / File
Vincent Skeen has been sentenced to five years and two months in jail for the killing of Luke Tipene. Photo / File

On 16 August 2016 an article was published on the www.nzherald.co.nz website regarding Vincent Skeen which contained information the publication of which was prohibited by statutory provisions and Court order; was misleading to the extent that it conveyed the impression that a Court order had been made having the effect of withholding information from the jury; and incorrectly described a Court order.

The Herald unreservedly apologises to Mr Skeen, the High Court, Youth Court, the Defence, the Crown, and to Mr Skeen's family in respect of that publication; and records that Mr Skeen's mother strongly denies engaging in any conduct of the sort that was imputed to her in the article.

The family of slain man Luke Tipene says they're disappointed with the sentence handed down to the man responsible for his death.

Vincent Angene Skeen, 18, was sentenced to five years and two months in prison at the High Court in Auckland today for the manslaughter of Tipene.

The 17-year-old died in the early hours of November 2014 from blood loss after Skeen swung a broken beer bottle in a brawl outside a Halloween party in Grey Lynn.

The jagged bottle hit Tipene in the neck, causing fatal wounds.

Crown prosecutor Brian Dickey called for a sentence starting point of eight years in prison, while Defence lawyer Lorraine Smith urged for a starting point of seven years with a significant discount for an early guilty plea, youth and remorse.

Justice Mary Peters acknowledged Skeen may not have intended to hit Tipene in the neck with the bottle, but said she believed he did aim for the upper body.

She issued Skeen with his first three strikes warning for violent offending.

Smith said Skeen was "extremely remorseful" and would carry the burden of Tipene's death with him for the rest of his life.

She said there was no doubt Skeen should be jailed, but said he had good support and urged the judge to consider the impacts a sentence of imprisonment could have.

In a victim impact statement read to the court by the Crown, Tipene's mother Terry Wilson said the impact of her son's death was "indescribable" and told of how she was "paralysed by pain".

She said she had looked to the heavens and asked to be taken too.

Outside court, family spokesman Sean Wilson said the result wasn't what they'd hoped for, but it was now time to move on and keep the memory of Tipene alive.

They came for justice, and had to respect the result, he said.

It was the second trial in the case after the first ended in a hung jury last year.

17 year old Luke Tipene died after being attacked in Grey Lynn. Photo / Facebook
17 year old Luke Tipene died after being attacked in Grey Lynn. Photo / Facebook

- Newstalk ZB

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