They came in the middle of the night - three dark-clad assailants, one armed with a crowbar and hiding behind a balaclava.

Ngaire Madams was terrified. Earlier she had been told they would come for her and her family.

They smashed 12 windows at the front of her Castlecliff home while her 4-year-old daughter hid at the back of the house, screaming.

It was the latest in a series of harrassment Madams has had to endure since members of her family were convicted of killing Whanganui Black Power gang leader Craig Rippon in 2015.

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For 15 months she has remained silent on advice from police, concerned any publicity might inflame the situation. She was told to stay away from social media, not to give interviews, and to avoid any confrontation. She did as she was asked.

But Saturday morning's attack was the last straw.

In an emotionally charged interview yesterday Madams appealed for the harassment to stop. She did not kill Rippon and says she has been respectful of his family.

She does not want to leave town as some have suggested she do. She was born in the Matai St house that she bought from her parents, and says to leave it would be like leaving behind her late mother all over again.

Yet there have been two burglaries, numerous threats and now what Madams describes as a terror attack.

She believes the catalyst for Saturday morning's attack was Friday's sentencing in the High Court at Whanganui.

Her former brother-in-law Kevin Roy Madams was sentenced by Justice Jillian Mallon to nine years and 10 months' imprisonment for Rippon's murder on November 8, 2015.

Rippon, a Black Power leader and a member of the gang from the 1970s, died in hospital after being assaulted in Rimu St, Gonville. He was a founder of the award-winning Matipo Development Trust, which helped vulnerable families in Whanganui.

Madam's ex-husband Tyrone Peter Madams, 57, and his son Matthew Thomas Madams, 37, were also sentenced for Rippon's manslaughter, as was a youth who has name suppression.

Tyrone Peter Madams was sentenced to five years and 10 months imprisonment, Matthew Madams to two years and four months and the youth to two years and seven months with immediate eligibility for parole.

Tyrone Madams' son, Tyrone William Madams, 39, pleaded guilty to murder before trial, and was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 12 years. Another youth was discharged during the trial.

Outside the court on Friday, a verbal confrontation ensued between Ngaire Madams' family and a number of people who had attended the sentencing, including members of Rippon's family.

It was during that confrontation, Madams said, that threats against her life, and the life of her family, were made.

"We knew the day would be emotional for both families. But we did not expect any confrontations," Madams said.

"We stayed behind after court had finished to give their family time to leave. We had done it that way throughout the trial."

But as Madams and her family left the courthouse, Rippon's group were still outside. Shouting began and Madams ushered her family to the other side of the street and tried to keep everyone moving.

A family member shot a video of the confrontation on a cellphone.

"We did not want to aggravate the situation. I said to my family to cross the road. There was a lot of shouting. I heard them say 'get the f*****s and that they would be coming after us."

On Friday night, Madams got home from work about 11.30pm, pottered for a while, and went to bed shortly after midnight. She had her daughter in the bedroom with her, even though she often sleeps in the lounge.

"About five minutes after I turned out the lights I heard smashing. At first it didn't register where it was coming from. I flew out of bed and ran to the lounge.

"I lifted the curtain and saw a guy, or it could have been a girl I couldn't tell, with a balaclava and a crowbar. There was glass everywhere. I was terrified. I thought we were going to die.

"But I must have given him a fright. He left the crowbar stuck in a window and ran. I saw three of them running down the street. They jumped into a white vehicle - it looked liked an older-style Toyota, and drove off."

A neighbour had also heard the breaking glass and had stepped outside to see what was happening. He shouted at them. Another neighbour rang the police.

Meanwhile Madams' 4-year-old daughter was at the back of the house with another family member and was hysterical. Madams said her daughter suffered from asthma.

"She was still screaming long after they had gone. I tried to calm her. I was worried she might have an asthma attack.

"Normally she would have been asleep on the couch under the windows. With all that glass showering into the lounge..."

Madams says she does not know who attacked her home. She said the police have told her they have no leads but "are doing the best they can".

Madams said the attack was the latest in a series of incidents that have happened to her since Rippon's murder.

"We were burgled right after the murder and then again some time later."

Police caught Black Power members with household items loaded onto a trailer in her driveway, yet have not charged anyone, she said.

"They were told to remove the gear and leave the premises - it's been closed off as part of the murder investigation."

Madams said she has remained silent about the harrassment after being told not to inflame a volatile situation.

"For 15 months I have kept my mouth shut. I have tried to respect his family. But I've had a gutsful.

"Members of my family have warned me that speaking out might cause further problems but it's time for the public to hear what we've been through.

"I want awareness. I've been victimised too far, it's gone on too long."

"We've always turned the other cheek, always walked away. But it's too much. I can't cope."

She said Saturday's attack was terrorism against an innocent mother and a 4-year-old child. "I thought staying silent would make it go away."

"I don't feel that I should leave. It's hard to see the home I grew up in destroyed.

"Hopefully they'll leave us alone."

Police said that on Saturday February 4 at about 12:30am they responded to reports that a house on Matai Street, Whanganui had been damaged.

"It is alleged that three people smashed the windows of the home with a crowbar before fleeing the scene.

Police are making enquiries into the incident and working with the victims of this offending."