Still no parole for woman who tried to carjack nun

Lisa McCormack has trained as a hairdresser while behind bars.PHOTO: ROB KIDD
Lisa McCormack has trained as a hairdresser while behind bars.PHOTO: ROB KIDD
A Dunedin woman who attempted to carjack a nun while high on LSD has been refused parole again.

Lisa McCormack (24) was sentenced to two years, four months’ imprisonment at the Dunedin District Court in October 2019, and the Parole Board said psychological counselling was needed before she could be safely released.

Panel convener Mary More said the prisoner had been moved to the self-care unit at Christchurch Women’s Prison in October but was shifted back to the minimum-security section after getting a new tattoo and becoming "aggressive".

McCormack’s aggression was starkly apparent in April 2019 after she consumed alcohol and LSD with friends.

She ran into the road where a 74-year-old motorist and his 80-year-old sister, a nun, were waiting at lights at the intersection of King Edward St and Hillside Rd.

McCormack later told police at the time she believed
her heart was about to stop
and that she urgently needed to get to hospital.

After wrenching open the driver’s door, she demanded access to the vehicle, the court heard at sentencing.

When the pair refused to surrender the car, she crawled over the man and kicked at him while "squashing" the nun in the passenger seat.

The driver got out and pulled McCormack out by the ankles.

She was restrained on the footpath by members of the public but wrestled herself free and attempted again to access the vehicle before she was arrested.

The male victim suffered cuts and bruises, while the nun was left with a cracked rib.

The Parole Board noted there was more violence in McCormack’s criminal history as well as theft, non-compliance with community-based sentences, burglaries and fraud.

Positively, though, the woman had "found her niche" while behind bars — hairdressing.

"She sees a future in that for her," Ms More said.

A psychologist assessed McCormack’s risk of reoffending as moderate to high and highlighted the fact she did not have a release proposal.

One-on-one counselling was recommended and the board hoped to see that under way before the next hearing in May.

"Ms McCormack understands that if she is partway through rehabilitation, a board is likely to wish her to complete it."

Her sentence expires in December.

rob.kidd@odt.co.nz

 

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