You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

BOP grandmother guilty of manslaughter

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 22/05/2017

Bay of Plenty grandmother Donna Parangi has been found guilty of the manslaughter of her eight-month-old grandson, who died in a hot car while she smoked drugs.

A jury found the 48-year-old guilty on Tuesday morning, following a six-day trial in the High Court at Rotorua. It took two-and-a-half hours to reach its verdict.

Parangi was charged over the death of Isaiah Neil (also known as Te Whetu), who died after being left in a hot car while his caregivers smoked synthetic cannabis at Taneatua in 2015.

The Crown argued she deprived him of the necessaries of life and failed to take reasonable steps to protect him. She will be sentenced in Tauranga, with a date to be set.

Parangi was given a three strikes warning and has been remanded on bail until sentencing, with no guarantee of home detention.

The boy's parents, Lacey Te Whetu and Shane Neil, have already pleaded guilty to manslaughter for their role in his death, and will be sentenced on Friday.

The whanau declined to comment outside the courtroom, but Detective Brendan Paulsen, who sat through the trial, said it was fairly run and the proper verdict was reached where there was no winner.

During the trial, the jury was told Isaiah was left in a station wagon at Parangi's home while Parangi and his parents smoked synthetic cannabis and passed out.

Experts believed the temperature in the car would have been as high as 45C for between 90 minutes and two hours.

Parangi's defence argued that as Isaiah's parents were there he was not in Parangi's actual, legal care, and there was no act or omission or no departure from the standard of care expected.

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon