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Mum admits driving recklessly caused her 10-year-old daughter’s death

Teang Atauea died in an accident on the Napier-Taupō road on June 21.

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Teang Atauea died in an accident on the Napier-Taupō road on June 21.

The mother of a young girl killed in a car crash has pleaded guilty to careless driving and causing her death – and can avoid a conviction if she can prove she is a competent driver.

Ten-year-old Teang Atauea died in hospital two days after sustaining serious head injuries in an accident on the Napier-Taupō Road (SH5) on June 21, 2020.

She was not wearing a seat belt.

Teang was in a car with his family, originally from Kiribati but residing in Wairoa, returning from a trip to Auckland, where they had attended a birthday party.

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Teang’s mother, Teao Marawa, 36, was driving their car, a white 2012 Nissan Juke.

Also in the car were Marawa’s partner, Biiri Tokamwemwe, 53, his 14-year-old son, Tebinaa, and his daughter Temeria, 4.

The accident happened near the intersection of State Highway 5 and McVicar Road, north of Napier.  (File photo)

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The accident happened near the intersection of State Highway 5 and McVicar Road, north of Napier. (File photo)

Tebina was in the front seat. The others were in the back seat.

Marawa was driving along a straight section of the road after negotiating a sharp left turn near McVicar Rd when she drove to the edge of the grass on the left side of the highway.

The car traveled along a shallow roadside drain at around 75 km/h, before hitting a tree.

Teang was thrown forward and suffered serious head injuries. She was taken to Hawke’s Bay Hospital.

Temeria suffered traumatic brain damage and Biiri suffered multiple injuries in the crash

Tebinaa was not seriously injured.

In late 2020, Marawa was charged with reckless driving causing the death of Teang and reckless driving causing injury to Birii and Temeria.

Her name had been suppressed until she appeared in Napier District Court before Judge Russell Collins on Thursday. She pleaded guilty to all three counts.

THING

Speed ​​limits are too high on the majority of New Zealand roads, according to the NZ Transport Agency. (Video first published in June 2019)

His attorney, Peter Austin, said a resolution of the case has been achieved, involving Marawa pleading guilty.

Austin said it was agreed with police that if Marawa took a defensive driving course, took driving lessons and was confirmed to be a competent driver, they would not oppose a request for release. without condemnation.

Judge Collins indicated that the decision to release without sentencing would be sentencing in June.

After Teang’s death, her father described her as a “charming and kind young woman”.

“She always wanted to learn new things. Every time we knocked on the door, she was always there to greet them. I always knew Teang would be a bright young woman because she always talked too much and asked too much,” he said.

Wairoa Elementary School posted a tribute to Teang on social media, saying she would be remembered as “a kind and caring young woman with a beautiful smile, and it is a huge loss to our school whanāu qu ‘she is no longer with us.