Child Youth and Family has admitted mistakes in its handling
of 13-year-old murderer Jordan Nelson following criticism
from the teen's step-grandfather.
Kerry Lock told Radio New Zealand this morning that Nelson,
whom he considers his grandson, missed out on appropriate
counselling and support from CYF when he moved in with Mr
Lock and his partner of three years, Rosemaree Kurth.
Nelson was yesterday jailed for 18 years for murdering
50-year-old Ms Kurth, who was his caregiver, at her home near
New Plymouth in April.
CYF said today it had reviewed its "social work practice in
relation to Jordan" and had discussed its findings with Mr
"It is clear that Child, Youth and Family staff should have
communicated more effectively with Mr Lock and with Jordan's
school," spokeswoman Nova Salomen said in a statement.
"This problem was compounded by a delay in transferring
"It would appear that a lot of faith was placed in the fact
that Mr Lock had been Jordan's primary caregiver for most of
his life and was doing a great job as a father figure."
Nothing in Nelson's history suggested he was at risk of
committing such violence, Ms Salomen said.
The decision was made for Nelson to live with Mr Lock and Ms
Kurth in October last year.
Mr Lock told Radio New Zealand his grandson's CYF file was to
be transferred from Hawke's Bay to New Plymouth but that did
not happen until March.
He said CYF failed to organise the counselling the teenager
Nelson will serve at least six years before he is eligible
for parole, but Mr Lock told RNZ he would oppose any bid for
The teenager allegedly claimed he was upset at Ms Kurth for
not allowing him to see his mother, a claim that wasn't true,
Mr Lock said.
In court yesterday, Mr Lock read out a victim impact
statement saying he felt his world had ended when he found Ms
"When I returned from crossing that river on that day and saw
the two bloody drag marks leading into the spare room, seeing
Rose laying on the floor ... I thought my world had ended,"
Ms Salomen described it as a "terribly tragic case" and said
staff were assessing what needed to be done for Nelson.
- By Abby Gillies of APNZ