Youth admits possession of mosque shooting video

Police have dropped their allegation that a 16-year-old youth distributed the mosque shooting video, and the teen has admitted possession of the video of the March 15 killings at Christchurch’s Al Noor Mosque.

The youth had been due to have pre-trial arguments today ahead of a trial on the distribution charge.

However, agreement was reached and Judge Brian Callaghan was told in a memorandum yesterday from youth advocate Anselm Williams that the hearings would not be required.

The Youth Court sat this morning, with prosecutor Deirdre Elsmore seeking to amend the charge to an offence under the Films, Videos, and Publications Act, of possession of the video with the knowledge that it was objectionable.

The youth did not deny that charge and Judge Callaghan then remanded him on continued bail to July 30 for a Family Group Conference to be held that will suggest a plan for how the case should be handled.

The youth was arrested soon after the mosque shootings and remained in custody through several hearings where bail was refused, until he was released on bail at a Youth Court session on May 30.

Youth Court hearings are held in closed court sessions and reporting is restricted.