Editor's Picks

Economy

CookSafe tag-ins increase

27 January 2022

National
Business

Hackers target local bank

26 January 2022

National

Travel bubble ‘risky’

26 January 2022

Health

Omicron threat looms

25 January 2022

Health
Local
Local

Sheraton site stirs again

24 January 2022

Rugby league

Cooks ready for Schools 7s

21 January 2022

Economy

Unvaxed and unwelcomed

21 January 2022

National
Health
Economy
Crime
French Polynesia
Other Sports

Sun, sand and plenty of fun

17 January 2022

Opinion
Business
Letters to the Editor
New Zealand
Business

Iconic café closes down

12 January 2022

French Polynesia
Pacific Islands
Rugby league
National
National
Letters to the Editor
Entertainment

The story of Tapuaetai

7 January 2022

Nine months disqualification for careless driving causing injury

Saturday 31 July 2021 | Written by Caleb Fotheringham | Published in Crime, National

Share

In Avarua’s High Court on July 20, Odette Stanke was disqualified for driving for nine months and will be on probation for a year for careless driving causing injury.

During the sentencing, Stanke heard despite being disqualified she can still drive for work purposes.

The incident occurred on August 18, 2019, when a right-hand turn from Stanke near Friendly Mart in Arorangi resulted in two New Zealand tourists falling off their motorbikes. The incident resulted in substantial injuries to both victims.

Stanke pleaded not guilty to the charge and a two-day emotional court case took place from April 22 and 23 this year.

The New Zealand victims appeared on the video conferencing app Zoom from New Zealand and accused Stanke of ruining their holiday.

One of the victims, Deborah Fahey said the crash left her with a permanent scar on her forehead that makes her feel self-conscious.

The other victim, Lynda Whitehead said she suffered from multiple injuries that included a knee injury that required ACL surgery (anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction). In April she said she was still recovering.

Whitehead said a shoulder injury from the fall also took four months to heal. She said she had exhausted the New Zealand government’s physiotherapy funding.

As part of the sentencing, Stanke was ordered by Justice Patrick Keane to pay $5000 in repatriation fees towards the victim’s medical costs. Stanke is required to pay this at a rate of $50 a week.

Stanke’s lawyer, Michelle Tangimama during sentencing told the court her client needed to drive so she could work.

Speaking with Cook Islands News after the trial, Tangimama said her client, “still needed to live”.

It resulted in Stanke being able to drive from 12 noon to 4pm Monday to Friday and Saturday from 8am to 12pm for the next nine months.

Crown prosecution wanted the defendant to attend community service but this was rejected by Justice Keane because Stanke is to pay the repatriation costs.

Stanke will attend a course related to driving as part of her probation.