Southern Thompson case: Murder-accused appears in court after handing herself in

A woman who cut off her electronic monitoring bracelet and went on the run for a week while she was supposed to stand trial for the murder of her daughter has appeared in court.

Southern Thompson, 27, appeared via audiovisual link in the High Court at Rotorua this morning after handing herself in to Hamilton police last night.

She is accused of killing her 18-month-old daughter, Comfort Jay Thompson-Pene, between July 20 and July 23, 2018 at Tirau.

She had been on electronically-monitored bail and was to appear in the High Court at Rotorua on Tuesday for trial.

However, on Thursday night last week, her electronic-monitoring bracelet was removed and she didn’t attend court.

Crown Solicitor Amanda Gordon told Justice Tracey Walker this morning Thompson handed herself in about 8.15pm on Thursday.

“She told police she wanted a couple days of freedom and now wanted to come and own up.”

Thompson faces four charges, including murder, injuring the child with intent to injure and two charges of ill-treating a child.

The 18-month-old died in Waikato Hospital on July 24, 2018.

The trial was delayed each day until Thursday when Justice Walker dismissed the jury panel, advising them of the situation.

Justice Walker remanded Thompson in custody to reappear in the High Court on February 19 at 9am for a callover.

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