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Child killer guilty of murder attempt


Significant, dangerous offending

The killer of six-year-old Featherston girl Coral-Ellen Burrows has pleaded guilty to attempted murder of another man in prison.

Stephen Roger Williams on Thursday pleaded guilty in the High Court at Wellington to a charge of attempted murder of a fellow inmate.

Williams, 45, is serving a life sentence for the murder of his step-daughter Coral-Ellen, who he beat to death while high on methamphetamine in September 2003, before dumping her body by Lake Onoke in Wairarapa.

The summary of facts stated the latest incident happened on July 31 after Williams believed the inmate had told Corrections officers that he had tobacco hidden in his cell.

“The defendant believed that the victim had told Correction officers that he had tobacco after he gave him a cigarette the previous day.”

When the 47-year-old victim returned to his cell at the end of the working day, Williams threw boiling water over him and then began striking him with a sharpened plastic knife.

“The victim fought back and escaped to the guard hut to alert them that he had been injured.”

The victim suffered four stab wounds – one to the back of the head and three to the back of his neck. He also suffered from extensive burns to his neck, chest, upper torso and arms.

Williams is also in preventive detention after the attempted murder of a prisoner at Paremoremo in 2016.

“The prisoner is making it clear that he wants to remain in prison, that’s part of the motivation for the offending,” Crown prosecutor Grant Burston told the High Court on Thursday.

“This is most unusual and significant, dangerous offending.”

He said Williams was being moved to a high security prison in Auckland.

Williams will be sentenced on November 1. The charge comes with a maximum penalty of 14 years imprisonment.



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