16 Dec 2009

Marie Jamieson's killer admits her murder

6:23 pm on 16 December 2009

The man accused of the killing of a woman in Auckland eight years ago has admitted her rape and murder.

Joseph Reekers, who was arrested last year, originally denied the charges.

He entered guilty pleas in Auckland District Court on Wednesday.

Marie Jamieson, 23, went missing in 2001, sparking a large search. Her body was found behind a west Auckland factory nine days later.

At the time, police said Reekers was not a suspect during the first stages of the inquiry, but became one after the case was reopened last year when blood samples were taken from a number of people. He was arrested in Kaitaia.

Family relieved

Reekers' surprise guilty pleas ends nine years of uncertainty for Ms Jamieson's family.

Her father Gerry Jamieson, who was at Wednesday's court appearance, says the pleas are a huge relief, and spare them the trauma of a trial.

He says he never quite gave up hope that her killer would be found.

Mr Jamieson says it has been constantly in their minds over the years, and Reekers' admissions allow them to see some light at the end of the tunnel.

Reekers' lawyer Chris Comeskey says his client had discussed the pleas with him some time ago.

"Obviously he is truly very sorry to the Jamieson family but what can you say that could ever start to heal the hurt that they have been through."

Chris Comeskey says Reekers' own family is sad but resigned to the situation.

Police describe the guilty plea as pleasing.

Reekers will be sentenced next year.