It’s good to see the residents of Palmerston North being given the chance to have their say about the spin being put out that the City is ‘safe’ (see other posts about Palmy’s issues here: Link) and that crime, especially violent crime, and gangs aren’t a problem:
By MARIKA HILL – Manawatu Standard:
“The victim of a mugging and surprise assault has hit back at the mayor’s claims that Palmerston North is a safe city.
A fun night out turned into a terrifying ordeal for Alannah Giles and three friends when they were attacked by eight teenagers while walking down Linton St at 1.30am on February 14.”
Eight? some may call that a “gang” … but not in Palmerston North.
“After the attack, mayor Jono Naylor said he believed the city was not dangerous at night.
“We all need to be aware of steering clear of people who perhaps look threatening, and have some common sense about where we are and at what time of day,” he said at the time.”
So is he saying parts of Palmy are no-go areas at night? what about increasing police patrols?
“Miss Giles decided to speak out after a report in the Manawatu Standard last week. She said her group, two men and a woman friend visiting from Blenheim, were walking into town together.
“We’re all in our twenties, we’re allowed to be on the street at night,” she said.”
So are the crims unfortunately.
“Her two male friends, also Massey University students, were left with black eyes and split lips after the unprovoked attack near The Brewer’s Apprentice. “It was supposed to be a big, fun night out,” Miss Giles said.
Eight youths, some aged just 13, appeared from a hiding place and started punching and kicking the two men.
Miss Giles said the youths picked on the smaller of her male friends, kicking him in the head while he lay on the ground.
“I was just thinking about that guy that got stabbed in The Square. They could have had knives.”
The assault came a month after 22-year-old man was stabbed by a group of youths in The Square. Miss Giles said she tried to stop the fight but was “booted” by the boys and her bag was snatched. “I don’t think they intended to rob me. I was just getting in their way.”
The following day this appeared on Stuff
“Backlash as youth crime escalates
Harsher penalties for child offenders are being called for after a string of violent crimes by Palmerston North youths…
…Sensible Sentencing Trust spokesman Garth McVicar said the problems experienced in Manawatu were the same throughout New Zealand.
He said the problem of violent youth crime, which includes the beating of an off-duty police officer by a group of south Auckland youths on Friday, was self-inflicted.
“I blame my generation who have allowed the youth justice system to become so liberal and so politically correct that we have removed all consequences for the offenders.”Young offenders needed to be caught earlier and punished more harshly, he said.
“There have got to be consequences and that needs to start right from the first sign of wayward behaviour, not just crime, we got to have it in the schools.”We don’t want these wayward youths wandering the streets the way they are.”
Mr McVicar criticised the current family group conference system, which involves the family, friends, police, and victims, deciding on an offender’s punishment. “The family group conference system was sold as world class … I think it’s the biggest disaster to ever happen to our justice system…”
30 March – “Stay out of the square after dark”
“A 24-year-old man who was beaten and robbed by a gang of youths in The Square warns others not to venture through the central city alone.
The Palmerston North retail worker was punched in the face and back of the head, kicked to the ground, and had his wallet stolen during the attack about 2am yesterday…
This latest incident comes after a 15-year-old was stabbed at the Church St skatepark at 3am last Sunday, in an apparent clash between two groups of youths.
It also follows the brutal attack of Jonathan Thompson, 23, who received serious head injuries after being assaulted on the Church St side of The Square about 2.30pm on March 7″
Read about how Palmerston North’s (the city that ‘banned’ the number 13) entry in Wikipedia was censored to remove references to crime and gangs in case it scared off professionals from settling in the city: “MidCentral Health medical recruitment consultant Christine Wood said there had been two cases where doctors, one from Israel and another from Germany, had declined work in Palmerston North after looking the city up on Wikipedia.”
Today’s posts – click here