Jean Salter

No PhotoName: Jean Ann Salter.
Died: October 8, 2023.
Age at death: 78.
Cause of death: Strangled.
Location: Mount Maunganui, North Island, New Zealand.
Disability: Dementia.

Jean’s dementia was progressing, and it had been suggested that Jean should be moved to a residential facility; her husband, upset that they might be separated, strangled her with a necktie. The killer claimed that there was a suicide pact, but there is no evidence of this save for his claim, and Jean, impaired by dementia, would not have been able to consent to an assisted suicide.

Case Status:
John Alfred Salter (Husband), pleaded guilty to murder.

Wife’s last words as husband of 60 years strangled her with a tie
‘Smell of an oily rag’: Murder of wife with Alzheimer’s shows need for more dementia support

Chevana Fox

No PhotoName: Chevana Marie Fox.
Died: February 28, 2021.
Age at death: 28.
Cause of death: Hypoxic brain injury due to strangulation.
Location: Napier, New Zealand.
Disability: Juvenile Huntington’s disease.

Chevana’s mother strangled her. Her mother called emergency services to report what she had done, and Chevana was taken to the hospital; but her brain had been without oxygen too long, and she died four weeks later.

Case Status:
Cherlyene May Lawrence (Mother), pleaded guilty to murder, sentenced to 6 years 6 months.

Mum who killed terminally-ill daughter sentenced to six and a half years in jail
Napier mother admits murdering daughter with juvenile Huntington’s disease
Mother admits killing disabled daughter in Napier

Noeleen Marinovich

Photo: A middle-aged woman with dark hair and light skin, in a soft orange suit, smiling for the camera.Name: Noeleen Ann Marinovich.
Died: February 7, 2019.
Age at death: 59.
Cause of death: Head injury.
Location: Oratia, North Island, New Zealand.
Disability: Bipolar disorder, mobility impaired.

Noeleen’s son strangled her, then bludgeoned her to death with a hammer.

For her 60th birthday, she wanted to go to Queenstown. Noeleen died at age 59.

Case status:
Martin Marinovich (Son), convicted of murder, sentenced to 14 years to life.

Inside the senseless murder of a reclusive mother by her only son
Man found guilty of murdering mother with hammer
Son who strangled mother and hit her with a hammer 12 times guilty of murder
Noeleen MARINOVICH’s Notice
Son who strangled mother and beat her with hammer jailed for murder

Comfort Thompson-Pene

No PhotoName: Comfort Jay Thompson-Pene.
Died: July 24, 2018.
Age at death: 18 months.
Cause of death: Blunt head trauma.
Location: Tirau, North Island, New Zealand.
Disability: Birth defect.

Comfort died from head trauma after long-term child abuse and neglect.

She had spent her first few months of her life in the hospital.

Case Status:
Southern Thompson (Mother), convicted of murder, child abuse, injury with intent, and failing to seek medical care; sentenced to 17 years to life.

Named: Woman who abused, neglected and bashed her child to death
Mum who abused, neglected then murdered her own daughter can now be named
Southern Thompson Name Suppression Lift A Reminder Of NZ’s Atrocious Child Abuse Statistics

Patricia Maulder

No PhotoName: Patricia Anne Maulder.
Died: January 14, 2017.
Age at death: 66.
Cause of death: Gunshot.
Location: Waipukurau, New Zealand.
Disability: Mental illness; chronic anxiety.

Patricia’s husband killed her before dying by suicide. His daughter-in-law thinks he believed Patricia would not be able to cope without him.

Patricia kept a neat garden. Before retirement, she and her husband had run a fish-and-chip shop.

Case Status:
Kevin Maulder (Husband), deceased.

Murder-suicide couple ‘victims of mental health stigma’, coroner finds
Deceased Waipukurau couple named
Couple found dead in Waipukurau named

Ruby Knox

Photo of Ruby Knox. She is a young woman with shoulder-length brown hair and pale skin, wearing a black, white, and red shirt.Name: Ruby Isabella Knox.
Died: May 16, 2016.
Age at death: 20.
Cause of death: Asphyxia.
Location: Blenheim, New Zealand.
Disability: Autism, intellectual disability, spina bifida.

Weeks before the murder, Ruby Knox’s mother self-published a book about caring for her disabled daughter. In it, she said that she had “thoughts of ‘blowing up the hospital’ or of taking ‘serious violent action’.”

Her mother made good on those statements when she drugged and then smothered Ruby to death.

In her book, Ruby’s mother briefly mentions Ruby playing on the piano.

A review of the services available to Ruby and her mother found they were adequate.

Case status:
Donella Knox (Mother), pleaded guilty to murder, sentenced to 4 years, scheduled to be released after less than two years.

The one voice that might have saved Ruby Knox
Blenheim mum Donella Knox jailed for murdering autistic daughter Ruby
Mother jailed for murder of autistic daughter
The Big Read: Case of Donella Knox who murdered autistic daughter Ruby a ‘once in a generation case’
Donella Knox published harrowing book a month before murdering autistic daughter
Blenheim woman Donella Knox details the struggles caring for her autistic daughter
Blenheim mother murdered autistic daughter after tolerating years of abuse
Protest for parents of autistic children after Donella Knox sentencing
Supporters plan protest to get Donella Knox out of jail and improve services after she murdered her autistic daughter
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Outrage as mum who murdered autistic daughter is jailed for four years
Autism Memorial: Ruby Knox
Autistic girl’s murder sparks external review
Blenheim woman Donella Knox shuts down protests, wants to ‘move on’
Donella Knox: A mother forced to fight for too long
Independent review of Donella and Ruby Knox’s treatment set for May
Donella Knox who killed autistic daughter is jailed
Autism NZ calls for respite care overhaul after Donella Knox case
On Donella Knox, her disabled daughter, and the so-called ‘mercy killing’
No Excusing the Murder of Autistics!
Health service review prompted by murder of autistic daughter to begin
Ruby Knox murder case: DHB reveals review details
Review of disability services about to start following Ruby Knox murder
‘Mercy killing’ mother Donella Knox to read review prompted by daughter’s death
Review prompted by Ruby Knox murder blasts NZ’s disability care
Mum who killed autistic daughter to be released from prison

Jermain Ngawhau

Photo of a toddler boy with pale skin and straight brown hair, wearing a winter coat, lying on his stomach and looking at the camera.Name: Jermain Mason Ngawhau.
Died: December 18, 2015.
Age at death: 2.
Cause of death: Head injury.
Location: Clendon Park, Auckland, New Zealand.
Disability: Developmental delay.

Jermain’s grandmother was angry that he was having trouble walking; so she threw him down the hallway, causing a head injury that killed him. She then tried to blame his death on his four-year-old sister.

Case status:
Kathleen Elizabeth Cooper (Grandmother), convicted of murder, sentenced to 14-and-a-half years to life.

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Jury begins deliberations in case of grandmother accused of murdering grandson
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Grandmother Kathleen Cooper found guilty of murdering grandson
Kathleen Cooper murder case raises questions around whanau first principle
Life imprisonment for woman who killed grandson

Bruce Rangitutia

Photo of Bruce Rangitutia, a middle-aged man smiling awkwardly at the camera. He is wearing a white T-shirt; his skin is tan, and his hair is salt-and-pepper, cut short.Name: Bruce Tau Rangitutia.
Died: December 8, 2015.
Age at death: 55.
Cause of death: Head injury, pneumonia, starvation.
Location: Tokoroa, North Island, New Zealand.
Disability: Cerebral palsy, intellectual disability.

When Bruce’s mother died, he went to live with his brother and sister-in-law, who abused and neglected him. He shrank to 45.7 kilos and was hospitalized after entering a coma. After being stabilized, he was supposed to go to a rehabilitation facility; but his brother and sister-in-law refused this once they realized they would no longer receive money for caring for him; so he went back to live with them. They went right back to neglecting him, including denying him his regular medication.  Confined to bed because of malnutrition and unexplained injuries from blunt-force trauma that were likely caused by abuse, he was unable to get food for himself, and his caregivers ignored his cries for food and water. He died of a combination of head injury, pneumonia, bedsores, and starvation.

Case status:
Jovander Raymond Terry (Adoptive brother), pleaded guilty to ill treatment of a vulnerable adult, sentenced to 6 years 7 months.
Annie Mathews (Sister-in-law), pleaded guilty to ill treatment of a vulnerable adult and failing to seek medical care, sentenced to 4 years 10 1/2 months.

A Tokoroa couple have been jailed after starving a man with cerebral palsy to death – 23-Sep-2019 – NZ Law and Order news
Vulnerable man who drank own urine spends last hours ‘constantly moaning and calling for food and water’
Vulnerable man starved by carers died weighing 6st after begging for food
Tokoroa couple admit starving man with cerebral palsy before he died
View Bruce RANGITUTIA’s Notice on and share memories

Leon Jayet-Cole

Photo of a toddler with white-blond hair and pink skin; he is wearing an orange T-shirt and smiling for the camera.Name: Leon Jayet-Cole.
Died: May 28, 2015.
Age at death: 5.
Cause of death: Head injury due to blunt-force trauma.
Location: Papanui, Christchurch, New Zealand.
Disability: Autism.

Leon was a “beautiful, happy-spirited kid” who made his family laugh with the quirky things he said. He had learned to speak and learned to read when he was four, and at five years old was enrolled in school. His obituary calls him the “chief mischief maker of his brothers and sisters Lucas, Nadia, Anabelle, Fabian, and Liam; Giane, Daniel and James.” He loved pillow-fighting and riding his tricycle. He had to have his toast cut just right, or he wouldn’t eat it. His favorite movie was Frozen.

He hadn’t spoken until he was four, but then he started speaking, reading, and doing math all at once. Leon was a bookworm who would start reading the moment he woke. When they saw how fast he was learning, his family began calling him “Superman”. He loved school, which he attended for half-days, and Dr. Seuss was his favorite author. He had a brother who was also autistic.

Leon’s stepfather allegedly beat him to the point that he suffered a severe head injury; despite the head injury, no one sought medical care for him right away. Leon survived on life support in the hospital for two days before he died. His organs were transplanted and have saved the lives of five people.

Leon may have been abused regularly for some time; he and his older brother had both been treated for head injuries at the hospital, but they had all been written off as accidental.

Case Status:
James Stedman Roberts (Stepfather), charged with murder, committed suicide while out on bail.

Autism Memorial: Leon Jayet-Cole
Coroner: Agencies missed red flags before autistic Christchurch boy Leon Jayet-Cole’s death
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Police could have done more to stop violent stepfather
Christchurch schoolboy Leon Jayet-Cole hospitalised with head injury months before death
Concerns raised with CYF before Leon Jayet-Cole’s death
File shows tragedy of Leon Jayet-Cole unfolding
Funeral for man accused of killing autistic boy
Leon Jayet-Cole, the little New Zealand boy whose gravestone has his murderer’s name on it
Man accused of killing child found dead
Man accused of murdering autistic boy found dead
Warning signs in CYF reports before Leon Jayet-Cole’s alleged murder
Inquest into death of Leon Jayet-Cole, 5, hears from step-dad who died awaiting murder trial
Mother accepts dead husband killed autistic son

Ena Lai Dung

No PhotoName: En Lai Dung.
Died: January 16, 2015.
Age at death: 77.
Cause of death: Starvation.
Location: Manurewa, South Auckland, New Zealand.
Disability: Elderly disabled; possibly bulimia.

Ena Lai lived with her daughter in a rented house. Her daughter refused to take care of her or ask for help; she claimed that Ena Lai had bulimia and refused to eat.

Ena Lai died in her filthy bed, weighing only 29 kg (64 pounds), dehydrated, malnourished, and suffering from infected bedsores. She had fourteen half-healed broken ribs and a broken sternum.

Case status:
Cindy Taylor (Daughter), found guilty of manslaughter, sentenced to 13 years 3 months.
Brian Taylor (Housemate), found guilty of failure to protect a vulnerable adult, sentenced to 6 years.
Luana Taylor (Housemate), found guilty of failure to protect a vulnerable adult, sentenced to 6 years 6 months.

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Pathologist: I’ve never seen anything like it
Trial begins over elderly woman’s grim death
Woman found guilty of letting mother starve
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Daughter jailed for neglect and manslaughter of elderly woman