Despite pleas by the family of murdered teen Tania Burgess that her killer never be released and given a ‘fresh start’ he will walk out of jail on August 1 after a parole board cut a year off his sentence.
Tania was 15 when the boy, then 16, ambushed and stabbed her 48 times in a NSW car park in 2005 and left her to die.
Despite pleas by the family that he not be allowed to remain anonymous, the 32-year-old killer can only be named as DL because the offence happened when he was a minor.
The man who killed 15-year-old Tania Burgess in 2005 by stabbing her 48 times will walk out of prison a year early after he was granted parole which will end his 17 years in jail
Justice James Wood said during the NSW State Parole Authority hearing that he had accepted expert advice that strongly recommended DL should be released with supervision before his full sentence expired next year.
‘The priority is now supervision to foster his reintegration and the protection of the public,’ the report by the Serious Offenders Review Council stated.
The now 32-year-old killer, who can only be named as DL because he committed the offence as a minor, will have strict parole conditions imposed including electronic monitoring
DL must provide authorities daily notifications of all his movements, be electronically monitored and must engage with treatment by a forensic psychologist along with other strict conditions.
Justice Wood extended the parole authority’s deepest sympathies to Tania’s parents, Mandy and Chris, who were present in court.
After being identified by a dying Tania, DL was arrested that evening.
Tania’s parents, Chris and Mandy Burgess, have argued that DL should never be released and given the chance at an adult life that their daughter was forever denied
At his trial the jury only took 90 minutes to convict him.
He was jailed for a maximum term of 22 years with a non-parole period of 17 years.
The sentence was reduced on appeal by four years in 2018 meaning he has been eligible for parole since mid 2018.
Leading up to the hearing Tania’s mother Mandy Burgess spoke to Sydney radio station 2GB on Wednesday.
She said DL had never expressed remorse and was now getting a chance at adult life that was denied her daughter.
‘You just wipe 17 years off and he can start a new life and yet we lost our daughter,’ she said.
Mandy said that Tania was a ‘beautiful, caring and loving’ teenager who was just starting to bloom at age 15
Mandy said her other two children, Gemma and Blake, had become adults but Tania would always be frozen as 15-year-old girl.
‘You can only dream what kind of life she would have had. She was such a beautiful caring, loving teenager,’ Mandy said.
‘It was all taken away from us. She was just a girl, she was just starting to bloom at the age of 15.’
After getting off the school bus Tania was taking a shortcut home through Forrester’s Beach Resort car park when DL, a boy she caught the bus with but did not go to school with, attacked her.
After holidaymakers saw him astride a prone Tania four people rushed to her aide as she lay dying in a pool of blood, struggling for breath.
While most of the stab wounds DL inflicted were shallow, one reached Tania’s heart.
The motive was unclear but in the Supreme Court trial in 2008, the court heard that he had confessed to feeling rejected by Tania.
After being named by Tania he was arrested within hours at home in nearby Bateau Bay, where police found bloodstained clothing in his bedroom.
Mandy said she tried not to remember that day.
‘I try to block out those horrible images of what we saw that day and remember Tania for what she was,’ Mandy said.
She said it would be better that DL never get released and continued to argue it would be ‘safer’ for the community if his full identity was released.
‘To wake up one morning and hear that he has hurt somebody else in the community, and put another family through what we have been through,’ she said
‘I could not possibly imagine, in this universe, for that to happen,’ she said.
However, if he was going to be released she said it was better he be supervised under parole conditions than to walk out totally free when his sentence was due to run out next August.