Otago Daily Times

Mother on run before trial

- KELLY MAKIHA

ROTORUA: A Tirau mother who was to stand trial for murder this week has cut off her electronic monitoring bracelet and is on the run.

Southern Thompson is accused of killing Comfort Joy ThompsonPe­ne between July 20 and July 23, 2018.

She faces four charges in total, including murder, injuring the child with intent to injure and two charges of illtreatin­g a child.

The 18monthold died in Waikato Hospital on July 24, 2018.

Thompson was to stand trial in the High Court at Rotorua this week. The trial was to start on Tuesday but has been delayed every day until yesterday.

Justice Tracey Walker told the jury yesterday morning they were no longer required.

She advised the court Thompson had cut off her electronic monitoring and was now being sought by police.

She said while some jury trials could proceed without defendants, this was not one of them and she vacated the trial. She said a new trial date would be set.

Thompson was charged with the toddler's murder in November 2019. — Rotorua Daily Post

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