A woman who murdered her partner with a steak knife will be released from prison this month - again.

And she will be subject to strict release conditions for the next six months in a bid to stop her reoffending and be recalled to prison for a second time.

In 2010 Napier woman Jacqueline Elaine Wihongi was found guilty of stabbing her partner of 17 years to death with a steak knife.

She was sentenced to 12 years in prison.


Wihongi was not given a life sentence for the killing.

At sentencing in Napier in 2010, Justice John Wild said it would be manifestly unjust to sentence Wihongi to life imprisonment due to her "history of victimhood''.

Evidence was given of her tragic life, including suffering a brain injury while young, alcohol and drug abuse, rape, home invasion by a gang member and subsequent traumatic stress disorder, plus a violent relationship with her partner.

She is one of only three murderers in the country not sentenced to life for her violent and fatal offending.

Wihongi was released on parole in May 2017.

However she was sent back to prison in July last year after she breached her parole conditions.

She had entered into a relationship without advising her probation officer and also failed to attend a number of appointments with a psychiatrist.

The 42-year-old appeared before the board again in July, armed with a proposal for her release.


She had been declined parole in January as the board felt "more work needed to be done in the prison by way of further one-on-one sessions with the psychologist".

A decision released to the Herald confirmed Wihongi has now completed four further sessions.

She was supposed to complete six sessions but was moved to a different prison which interrupted her programme.

The prison psychologist told the board no further sessions in prison were necessary for Wihongi - but a programme in the community could be carried out.

The board said Wihongi gave a "satisfactory account of herself at interview" and they were satisfied she could be released with "appropriate conditions".

Her sentence end date is in June 2022 and until then, she will be subject to those conditions.

Wihongi must not possess, use, or consume alcohol, controlled drugs or psychoactive substances.

She must have permission from her probation officer to start or change employment.

She must attend any psychological assessments or mental health appointments suggested by her probation officer and complete any counselling or treatment directed.

Wihongi must also, at the earliest opportunity, notify her probation officer of any intimate relationship which commences, resumes, or terminates.

Her conditions stipulate she must not have contact with any victim of her offending and she is banned from entering the Gisborne area.

Wihongi was found guilty by a jury of murdering Vivian Hirini, her partner of 17 years.

But Justice John Wild ruled it would manifestly unjust to sentence her to life in prison because mental impairment was a significant factor in Wihongi's offending.

Hirini was the father of five of Wihongi's six children and the couple, who were living apart at the time of the murder, had a long history of violence to each other.

She had previously blinded him in one eye by throwing a bottle at him.

Before the murder, Wihongi and her Hirini had been drinking with another man before starting a heated argument.

Their daughter, aged 11 at the time, watched her father walk out of the house and her mother get a knife from the kitchen and follow him.

Wihongi lunged at him on the path outside, stabbing him hard in the chest and was later arrested.