Beast victim marches for help
A woman whose former partner was dubbed the ‘Beast of Blenheim’ took to the streets to protest against ACC.
The woman, only referred to as Lorraine, says the march was not just for her, but for other sexual abuse victims, too.
Her ex, Stewart Murray Wilson, was jailed in 1996 for crimes against more than 40 women and girls, the charges covering rape, stupefying, bestiality, ill treatment of children and indecent assault.
Lorraine wasn’t immune to his depraved ways. She was drugged, beaten and forced to have sex with other women and the family dog.
It was this offending which earned Wilson the infamous title.
Two decades on, Lorraine is a shell of her former self.
Her small, frail frame, sunk into the base of a chair as she was wheeled down Hamilton’s Victoria St yesterday morning.
About a dozen people with pickets marched too, some with their own grievances with ACC.
Lorraine is softly spoken and despite having hearing aids, she’s hard of hearing.
The 62-year-old is battling to secure compensation for years of abuse at the hands of Wilson.
‘‘I just want peace of mind, for me and for other victims,’’ she said.
Alongside her, was advocate and friend Rererangi Eketone.
Eketone, 66, met Lorraine a few years ago, when she was living in shared accommodation in Hamilton.
Lorraine was 33kgs and sickly. She pleaded with Eketone for help.
Having worked as a counsellor and social worker, Eketone agreed to help Lorraine access counselling and ACC payments.
‘‘She’s had to lie to survive, she’s been on the streets, she’s been through a lot. And she’s had people try to take advantage of her,’’ Eketone said.
‘‘But it’s hard because she’s at home 24/7.
‘‘I only thought I’d help her out with counselling but here we are, years later.
‘‘It’s like bringing up a 60-yearold kid.’’
Lorraine has a daughter who she is no longer in contact with but Eketone said Lorraine’s family did make contact one year, after they saw her on TV.
In 2015, Eketone lobbied ACC on Lorraine’s behalf and secured her $20,500: a special claim for post traumatic stress disorder.
But she says it’s a small amount for the years of abuse Lorraine suffered.
Eketone’s health is ailing and she can’t look after Lorraine for too much longer.
She wants to help find her friend a safe place for the rest of her life, and says ACC should help to do that.
ACC were not able to talk specifically about Lorraine’s case, but in a statement, said survivors of sexual abuse that have been assessed for cover can access on-going therapy and support.
‘‘We always look at the injuryrelated needs of our clients, which can change over time, and what we can provide to meet those needs within the boundaries of the scheme.
‘‘We also compensate people for lost income, and for personal impairment that they have suffered as a result of having a permanent injury.’’
Last month, Wilson was found guilty of a raft of historical sex charges that included rape, attempted rape, indecent assault, threatening to kill and indecency with a girl under the age of 12.
He currently lives in a cottage on the grounds of Whanganui Prison under an extended supervision order and was due to be sentenced on the most recent convictions this month.
Rererangi Eketone (with the speakerphone) leads the protest.
Neha Wetere joins the march.
Lorraine and Reen Katipa make their way down Victoria St to ACC’s Hamilton office on London St.