JOHN SELKIRK/Dominion Post

ATTEMPTED INFANTICIDE: Kim Knoll has been jailed for three years for attempting to kill her young son, first with a boning knife and then with a pillow.

Mum jailed for stabbing son

By CLIO FRANCIS – | Thursday, 26 February 2009

Kim Knoll let out a small gasp as she was this morning jailed for three years for attempting to murder her young son.

Knoll, 20, was overcome by tears when Justice Pamela Andrews handed down her sentence at the High Court in Auckland this morning.

Crown prosecutor Ross Douche said the reasons behind why Knoll had stabbed her two-year-old boy with a boning knife would never fully be understood.

“For whatever reason, and that is still not clear, she determined to take steps to end the life of her child,” Douche said.

During the trial the Crown said that Knoll had also tried to suffocate her son with a pillow during the incident at their Te Aroha home in May last year.

Only the arrival of Knoll’s brother interrupted her actions and saved the life of the child, Douche said.

Defence lawyer Michael McIvor said his client now accepted she was responsible for her son’s injuries.

“It’s only really now that this has happened and at the end of the day she’s accepted it.”

He did not accept a probation officer’s report which said Knoll showed no remorse or empathy towards her son.

“What she wants to do is be reunited with her child,” he said.

Mr McIvor told the court that Knoll had a very supportive family.

“This has been a huge setback for the family, who came out from South Africa for a better life,” he said.

Justice Andrews said she had received a letter from Knoll’s parents.

“They said you were always a loving and caring mother to Lashawn. Understandably they have found this whole matter very difficult and confusing.

“None of them can believe that you were responsible for what happened.

“You are his mother and he ought to be able to trust you completely,” she said.

Justice Andrews said mitigating factors for Knoll’s sentence included her lack of previous convictions, her young age, her parental role, her traumatic background and the letter she had written expressing remorse.


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