The man who tortured and killed Lower Hutt schoolgirl Karla Cardno will make a bid for parole today but some of those involved in the case fear he will offend again.

Paul Joseph Dally, 52, who has spent almost 24 years in jail for the 1989 murder, will face the Parole Board seeking his release from prison.

He was given a life sentence in 1990.

Dally snatched 13-year-old Karla from her bike as she rode home from the local shops, dragged her to his house and repeatedly raped and tortured her for 22 hours.


He later put her naked, bound and gagged in the boot of his car and buried her alive in a shallow grave near Wellington Harbour.

Former Detective Senior Sergeant John Marsden, who led the investigation, said 23 years of imprisonment was not too long for someone with Dally's offending.

"I've been out of touch of course for many years and I don't know what sort of rehabilitation he's been through," Mr Marsden told Radio New Zealand.

"But for anyone to have committed the crime under the circumstances he did ... I don't believe he's in the right state to come out this time.

"I don't believe he's fit enough to come out.

"Anyone who commits a horrendous crime like he has done, I don't believe he should ever see the light of day."

Karla's stepfather Mark Middleton told 3 News he believed Dally was as dangerous as ever.

"For those people who think he's done his time and should be let out, perhaps invite him to their family, their daughters, bounce their kids up and down on his knee and see what they think," he said.


Mr Middleton was convicted in 1999 for threatening to kill Dally if he was freed from prison.

Mr Middleton told 3 News yesterday: "I have no fears of Paul Dally, and I've always said I want him released from prison."

Dally's last parole attempt in 2010 was refused.