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Violent murderer who stabbed Hamilton mum to death named as Cory Purutanga

The man who stabbed a Hamilton mum to death in a violent, frenzied attack had name suppression throughout the court process.

That suppression order finally lifted this morning with state-subsidized media outlet NZHerald naming the 35-year-old as the killer of Ngawai Himiona.

Purutanga killed the mother of four in December 2020, stabbing her multiple times. The attack was witnessed by her two younger children – the youngest of which, an infant, was being carried by Himiona as Purutanga unleashed his fatal attack.

Purutanga pleaded guilty earlier this year and was sentenced to ‘life imprisonment on 31 August with a minimum no-parole period of 17 years, but name suppression continued as his lawyer sought to have the order made permanent. The order lapsed last night.

At around 9.15pm on 16 December 2020, Himiona had been speaking on the phone to a 111 operator. Purutanga became angry when he learned of the call. He took a boning knife from the kitchen and stabbed her 17 times to the upper body. Her four month old baby was asleep between her legs at the time, while her four year old child witnessed the crime. Her two older children were not in the house.

Emergency services arrived but she was pronounced dead at the scene.


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