Peter Holdem, who abducted Christchurch girl Louisa Damodran as she walked home from school, throttled her and dumped her body in a river, has had his latest bid for freedom refused by the Parole Board.
The board's convener Judge David Carruthers called the murder "particularly savage and nasty" in his ruling and said the family remained anxious that he may reoffend.
"Their fears are real in our view," he said.
Holdem, 53, has been in jail since being convicted of murdering six-year-old Louisa near Christchurch in 1986.
He had just been released from prison for the abduction and attempted murder of a 10-year-old girl.
Holdem appeared before the Parole Board in May.
He was previously denied parole in 2007 and prevented from applying again for three years.
Judge Carruthers said Holdem was assessed as being at a very high risk of offending again, and "so far treatment has not been able to reduce those assessments".
Louisa's mother Aynsley Harwood appeared before the board in May, saying she believed Holdem would kill again if released.
We remember the murder and abduction of Louisa Damodran. It was widely reported, and provoked outrage around the country. In a recent Listener article, David Lomas gave an overview:
October 1986: Louisa Damodran, 6, was just 100m from her parent’s house in Bromley, Christchurch, on her way home from school when unemployed man Peter Joseph Holdem, 30, snatched her. He drove her to the Waimakariri River where he walked into the river and drowned her, before leaving her body to float down the river. She was found at the river mouth three weeks later. Although it was suggested at Holdem’s trial that the killing had a sexual motive, there was no evidence presented showing a sexual attack.
Holdem had only just been released from jail for the abduction and attempted murder of a 10-year-old girl in the 1980s.
Holdem has now been in custody for almost 24 years. We would be surprised if he ever tastes freedom again, and the streets of New Zealand are a safer place for his incarceration. Well done Parole Board.