Sight of red lace knickers may have led to alleged murder

THE sight of a pair of red lace knickers poking out of the pocket of his flatmate's pants may have sparked an altercation ending in a murder, the Brisbane Supreme Court heard yesterday.

On day one of the trial of Kenneth John Beattie, who is accused of the murder of Malcolm David Wood, Crown Prosecutor Vicky Lowrie QC detailed how Mr Wood was found hog-tied on the floor of the men's Ipswich home at 9.27am on July 27, 2014.

The Crown will allege it was Mr Beattie's unlawful act of restraining Mr Woods with the ligature that significantly and substantially contributed to his death.

The jury was told and shown footage recorded by police of a prone Mr Wood, his head a bright purple and his tongue lolling from his mouth.

Ms Lowrie told the court in police interviews Mr Beattie said Mr Wood had only lost conciousness momentarily and had been calling out and struggling during the whole of the incident.

She said Mr Beattie and Mr Wood had been flatmates for a matter of weeks and Mr Beattie, an interstate truck driver, was away for work in NSW while his fiancee 'Nikita' (as Mr Beattie called her) was staying at the home.

She said Mr Beattie had told police he received a call from Nikita the night before the alleged murder.

In this phone call, Nikita said she had been bashed and raped by Mr Wood and she was talking about "hanging herself".

The prosecution outlined that Mr Beattie's fiancee had on that evening called paramedics. One who took her to hospital will give evidence that she noticed abrasions on Nikita.

The court was told that despite the police's best efforts, Nikita could not be located to give evidence in the trial. However, the jury will be played relevant recorded phone calls from her.

Ms Lowrie told the jury Mr Beattie allegedly drove through the night to return home to Ipswich on the morning of July 27, picked up Nikita who had been discharged from hospital and was waiting at a service station for him.

Together they went to the Scottsdale St, Raceview home.

She said the Crown alleged Mr Beattie had told police when he had seen bruises on his partner, he had been filled with 'sheer rage'.

Ms Lowrie said Mr Beattie told police he found Mr Wood at the home with a pair of Nikita's red lace knickers sticking out of his pocket and he 'lost it', bashing Mr Wood then allegedly 'hog-tying' him as he struggled.

She told the court however, that the knickers have never been located.

Mr Beattie then allegedly instructed Nikita, who had been outside the home the whole time, to call the police to the address.

First witness for the prosecution, Senior Constable Aaron James Hamrey told the court when he was called to the scene that morning, Mr Beattie was 'pacing' next to the driveway for the police and told him, "I've got a pig tied up in there".

Ms Lowrie told the court Mr Beattie then allegedly told police Mr Wood had "f*cking bashed her, raped her, we found missing knickers, her f*cking jewellery that's gone missing" and that he had knocked him out and tied him up.

On finding the alleged victim tied up inside, Snr Const Hamrey told the jury Mr Wood was bound so tightly he could not get a finger in between his neck and the rope and had to cut it off him.

"Once I knelt down beside the male, I could feel that the head was cold, however the body was warm to touch,"Snr Const Hamrey said.

He said police performed CPR and eventually with attending paramedics they managed to get Mr Wood's heart beating again.

He was taken to Ipswich hospital and treated over the following days, however it was established he had been rendered brain dead.

Mr Wood's life support was turned off and he died on July 31.

The Crown alleged Mr Wood died of catastrophic neurological damage, caused by a cardiac arrest brought about by being tied up.

The Crown noted Mr Wood also had coronary artery disease.

Ms Lowrie said in Mr Wood's autopsy it was noted he had rib fractures and a collapsed lung likely caused by CPR, but also had fractures to the spinal column and three further rib fractures nearby which may be consistent with being kicked.

The trial is expected to run for more than a week, with a number of medical specialists to be called to give evidence.


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