Wanganui's attempt to stop Stewart Murray Wilson being dumped here has failed; the Herald reports:
A judge has dismissed Wanganui District Council's bid to stop serial sex offender Stewart Murray Wilson from being paroled to the region.Wilson, dubbed the "Beast of Blenheim", also failed in his bid to have his strict release conditions eased.After the two hearings in the High Court at Wellington yesterday Justice Ron Young released the outcome but not his full decision.He told the Parole Board to work out a plan for Wilson's reintegration into the community after his lawyer Andrew McKenzie said there was no timeline in place.The council says it will continue to fight the decision to move Wilson, 65, into its community. It will hold a meeting tomorrow, open to the public, to discuss its next moves.Wanganui Mayor Annette Main said yesterday she was "frustrated and disappointed" with the outcome of the hearing."We have legitimately put the concerns of our community at the heart of our decision to pursue legal action and whilst that has not produced our desired outcome, we will continue to listen and support the Wanganui community in an overriding and powerful desire for a safe community."I have said this many times and I reiterate - Stewart Murray Wilson will never be welcome in our community or any other community in New Zealand."Ms Main said Wanganui held Corrections and the police responsible for ensuring Wilson, who will be released this week after serving 18 years of a 21-year sentence for crimes against women and children, caused no harm to the community."This is a significant responsibility and one which they cannot hide from," she said.
Whether we like it or not (and for the record, we don't!) Wilson will be released from prison tomorrow. Quite where he will go is anyone's guess; the Wanganui District Council is yet to approve a consent for his house to be sited in the grounds of Wanganui Prison, so it will be several weeks until his house is ready for occupation.
In the meantime, all we can do is to call for sanity. As tempting as it may be to deal to Wilson, violence is not the solution. He is a thoroughly unpleasant fellow who has reportedly shown no remorse for his serious offending, but giving him "the bash" is not the solution.
Annette Main is quite right; Corrections and Police have a big responsibility to keep the Wanganui community safe. And if Wilson violates his parole conditions, they have a responsibility to lock him up quick-smart.