Manukau Courier : December 7th 2010
9 MANUKAU COURIER, DECEMBER 7, 2010 NEWS REV4799 www.metlifecare.co.nz OPEN TO VIEW Pakuranga: every Wednesday, 2pm to 5pm 14 Edgewater Drive, Pakuranga Highlands: every Thursday, 2pm to 5pm 49 Aberfeldy Avenue, Highland Park Why would you want to retire anywhere else? Experience two of East Auckland's finest retirement lifestyles at Metlifecare Highlands and Metlifecare Pakuranga. Two friendly communities where everyone is welcome Safe environment for peace-of-mind living All household maintenance is taken care of, so no more cleaning gutters and mowing lawns A wide variety of activities to enjoy Superb independent villas and serviced apartment living options available Beautiful gardens and landscaped grounds at your doorstep Community facilities, such as a heated indoor swimming pool, spa pool, hairdressing salon, library and more, to enjoy at your leisure Need more info? Talk to one of our friendly team on 09 533 0610. Innocence Project revisits Hall case Innocent or guilty: A photo of the then 23-year-old Alan Hall taken after he was arrested for the murder of Arthur Easton in 1985. Did police catch the right man for the murder of south Auckland father Arthur Easton in 1985 or was an innocent man sent to prison? That's the question being asked by the Innocence Project New Zea- land, a non-profit group that investigates possible cases of wrongful conviction. The project is a joint venture between Victoria and Otago universities. Alan Hall was convicted of the murder of Mr Easton, and spokes- man Geoff Hall says the family and many people in the Papakura com- munity have always believed in his brother's innocence. The family is pleased an inde- pendent organisation like the Inno- cence Project is reviewing Alan's case and preparing documentation to return his case back into the legal arena,'' he says. We believe there is still more information in the Papakura area that can help identify the real perpetrators who committed the home invasion on the Easton home.'' On the night of October 13, 1985, Arthur Easton and his two teenage sons were attacked in their Grove Rd home by an intruder armed with a bayonet. The struggle ended when Mr Easton was fatally stabbed by the intruder who fled the scene. During the investigation police were alerted to the then 23-year-old Alan Hall who recognised the bay- onet used in the murder as his. Innocence Project manager Dr Matthew Gerrie says during inter- views with police Mr Hall changed his story numerous times which increased suspicion about his involvement. He claimed -- and it was later proven true by police -- that his home had been burgled and the bay- onet stolen. The weapon linked Mr Hall to the crime and he was eventually charged with Mr Easton's murder. He served eight-and-a-half years in prison. However, the interesting point which the project is examining is the eyewitness testimony involved in this case specifically.'' Mr Gerrie says witnesses in the area at the time of the murder saw a man running away from the Grove Rd home across Clevedon Rd. Nearly all described him as Maori, around 1.83 metres tall. Alan Hall is Pakeha and just under 1.67 metres tall. The prosecution omitted all descriptive evidence that didn't fit with Mr Hall, Mr Gerrie says. Project researchers are now doing a complete overview of the evidence and want Papakura residents to know they are working on the case. After examining all the evidence they aim to submit a royal preroga- tive of mercy'' to the governor- general, he says. Mr Gerrie says he'd be happy to talk to anyone who has information about Mr Easton's murder. Call him on (04) 463-5233 exten- sion 8094 or email matthew.ger firstname.lastname@example.org to provide any infor- mation. REOPENING CRIMINAL CASES The royal prerogative of mercy provides a special avenue for criminal cases to be reopened where a person might have been wrongly convicted or sentenced. It is exercised by the governor- general who acts on the advice of the minister of justice. He has the power to grant a pardon, reduce a sentence or refer a case back to the courts for reconsideration. It does not operate as another right of appeal and cannot be used to repeat arguments that were unsuccessful in the courts or re-examine facts that have already been considered by a jury or judge. Where it appears a miscarriage of justice is likely, the prerogative of mercy will normally be exercised to refer the case back to the courts. The granting of a pardon is extremely rare and is usually considered only where there is compelling new evidence that a person could not properly have been convicted.
December 3rd 2010
December 9th 2010