The man who was behind the wheel of a car which struck and killed 14 year old Elijah Doughty is eligible for parole from this weekend after being sentenced last July on dangerous driving occasioning death.
By
Rangi Hirini

Source:
NITV News
21 Feb 2018 - 9:29 AM  UPDATED 22 Feb 2018 - 3:59 PM

On July 20 last year, the family of Elijah, alongside with many throughout the country, were devastated when a Perth jury acquitted the driver of manslaughter and instead found the driver guilty of dangerous driving occasioning death.

The man, whose identity has been suppressed by the courts, was sentenced to three years in jail.  

In Western Australia the policy for parole eligibility states that an offender, who is serving four years or less, is eligible for parole after serving half of their sentence.

The man was only sentenced last July, however he had been remanded since August 2016, meaning he has already served half of his time after adding together the past six months in prison plus the 11 months he served while Elijah’s death was being investigated.

NITV News had reached out to the Prisoner Review Board for comment. They did not confirm if the accused will be free this weekend but did confirm his Earliest Eligibility Date (EED) is for February 26 and said in most cases the decision to grant or not grant parole was made well before the EED.

The week following the sentencing, there were national rallies in every major city across Australia with hundreds of people calling for justice for young Elijah.

Last week, Elijah’s grandfather Albert Doughty called on the Kalgoorlie community to walk with him for ‘truth and justice’ for his grandson.

“Justice hasn’t been served for Elijah… [the man] is due for parole and we need to speak out,” he said in a Facebook video. 

Speaking with NITV News, Elijah’s grandad said that the Doughty family was devastated.

“We’re shattered, it’s opened up a lot of old wounds. If this was a black man he would never get parole, he’d be in there for murder,” Mr Albert said.

He added it’s been hard for the family to remain in the town which hold so many memories of Elijah.

He said his son had to move to Perth with the grandchildren after Elijah's death.

“There’s too many memories here. It affected all his mates.. They still come by the house and sit down and look at his photos.”

“We just want justice, he’s been dead for a few months and they’ll give his license back.  He should got life himself,“ Mr Doughty said.

 

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