Victim, parole board fear prisoner release

By Derek Cheng

The Parole Board has grave concerns about a knife offender who must be released, and whose victim has fled the country fearing another attack.

Robert Frame was to finish his three year and nine month sentence yesterday. In 2006 he stabbed neighbour Ian McArtney, 56, of Paekakariki, in the face with a 15cm blade in an attack described as irrational and unprovoked.

The board has imposed strict release conditions for six months but, in its last report, considered Frame a safety risk.

"He suffers from a dual diagnosis," said the report. "He has mental health difficulties and a long history of substance abuse. He is unable to engage properly with us in any rational discussions. He is in short a very great worry.

"There must be a proper concern in the community about risk on his release. However, as a matter of law we cannot prevent him being released at this time."

Frame says he has no intention of seeing Mr McArtney, and is banned from Paekakariki or Paraparaumu, but Mr McArtney believes Frame may come after him and has gone to Laos.

His son, James, who lives in the Paekakariki house where the attack occurred, is considering moving.

Frame, in his 50s, must have a psychiatric assessment, an alcohol and drug assessment and live at an approved address.

But Mr McArtney took little comfort from the conditions and has alerted local police. "Nothing has really changed. How much faith can I have in the Probation Service?" he said.

He says the Parole Board is "toothless" because its pleas for rehabilitation for Frame in prison were not taken up by Corrections.

The board wrote last October: "No programme has been undertaken to address the causes of his offending, nor has any intervention designed to achieve those purposes been undertaken."

Corrections said as a low-risk prisoner Frame was ineligible for intensive rehabilitation programmes, though he had received one-on-one counselling.

He has convictions in 1990 for possession of a knife and in 1997 for aggravated burglary and possession of an offensive weapon. He was acquitted of a murder charge when he was 16.

- NZ Herald

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