Homicide inquiries

Whanganui Police say there are no updates on two homicide inquiries and investigations are "very much ongoing". James Butler was found dead at a Wikitoria Rd property on April 22. Daniel Gooch died on May 9 after being found with unexplained injuries on the road in Tinirau St on April 20.

First reading
Whanganui MP Harete Hipango's first private members' bill has passed its first reading in Parliament and has now gone for consideration by a select committee. The Health and Safety at Work (Volunteer Associations) amendment bill would allow volunteer organisations which employ someone for less than 100 hours each week to forego certain regulations and costs around health and safety.

Fire in wall
A Caius Ave house received minimal damage from a fire in a wall, caused by an old fireplace, just after 7.30pm on Tuesday. Fire and Emergency Whanganui senior station officer Aaron Summerhays said the occupant had working smoke alarms which gave them an early alert to the fire.


Catch limits
Fisheries New Zealand has started public consultation this week on catch limits for North Island freshwater eels, both shortfin and longfin. Latest scientific information shows shortfin eel stocks are at sustainable levels, so no changes to the catch limits are proposed. Some longfin eel stocks are not increasing, and iwi and stakeholders worry about their sustainability. One option will be to reduce catch limits.

No arrests
Whanganui Police have made no arrests in relation to the fatal crash on Polson St on June 6 in which 13-year-old Keanu Josephs-Ranginui died. The driver of the stolen car fled the scene but is no longer "outstanding". A spokeswoman said inquiries are ongoing.

Held in custody
A Whanganui woman facing several drug-related charges will appear in Whanganui District Court on July 3 for a sentence indication. Rebecca Miriana Hamilton faces three charges of shoplifting, two of procuring or possessing cannabis, two of possessing or using utensils for methamphetamine and one charge of procuring or possessing methamphetamine. Hamilton was remanded in custody.

Case remanded
Carey Raymond Leask faces four charges of driving dangerously causing injury, driving dangerously causing death and failing to stop or ascertain injury. Leask was remanded on bail this week to July 30 when he is due in court again.