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Christie's life is over now: teen's mum

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 11/06/2017

The mother of an Auckland teenager killed by a man on bail for kidnapping her only months earlier has told an inquiry her daughter's concerns at times seemed an afterthought in the legal process.

Christie Marceau, 18, was stabbed to death in 2011 at her Hillcrest home, barely a month after Akshay Anand Chand was released on bail to within a kilometre of the house.

This was despite him facing charges of kidnapping and attempting to rape her, and the teen expressing fears for her own safety.

Chand, then 18, was found not guilty by reason of insanity of murdering the teen and detained as a special patient.

At a coroner's inquest into the death at the Auckland District Court on Monday, Ms Marceau's mother, Tracey, choked back tears as she read a statement describing the bail process from the family's perspective.

Struggling to say Chand's name - "Sorry. I dont use his name" - she said Ms Marceau's fears seemed to have been an "afterthought" at times and that the family had not been fully informed about parts of the bail process, including appealing the decision.

"We were only advised a couple days before the hearing Christie could write a letter," she said.

"Christie was never asked to write a complete victim impact statement nor advised there was such a thing."

Ms Marceau's father, Brian, told the inquiry he was in Australia for work when Ms Marceau was killed, having been assured by police they were keeping an eye on Chand and it was safe.

"My naivety and faith in the system was misplaced," he said.

Ministry of Justice victim adviser Andrea Swager told the hearing she would have likely told the family about the bail process and their right to make submissions.

She tried to "offer as much support as possible" and had no reason to withhold information, she said.

Ms Swager said she wrote down Mrs Marceau's response to finding out about the bail decision.

"She said: 'Christie's life is over now'.''

The inquest, before Coroner Katharine Greig, is expected to take two weeks.

It will look at the administrative processes leading to Chand's bail, his supervision and his mental health.

Earlier, Detective Sergeant James Watson said Chand told interviewing officers he had given the court a "real phoney apology" letter with the aim of getting bail.

Det Sgt Watson also recapped in graphic detail how Chand cornered the teen in her family's backyard on the morning of November 7, and stabbed her repeatedly as she screamed and tried to flee.

Ms Marceau was held by her mother as she died, Det Sgt Watson told the inquest.

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