UPDATED, AS SOON AS TO HAND, FROM OTHER DIRECT SOURCES
TUESDAY, 17TH JUNE, 2014.
Psychologist Dr Lawrence Playfair Lumsden advised that there was “absolutely zero” chance Allison was a suicide risk.
Ms Nutting said there wasn’t any suggestion Allison was experiencing suicidal thoughts.
Ms Richie said GBC told her about his achievements, she didn’t recall him mentiioning his children.
Toni McHugh has returned to the witness box for cross examination by Michael Byrne QC.
She was having an affair with the accused between 2008 and 2012.
“You’d been through a tumultuous period after the break … and after about three months he contacted you and you met. You knew that Allison had almost immediately started working in the business and he told you that he wasn’t going to leave his wife Allison,” Mr Byrne said.
“Not at that time,” Ms McHugh replied.
Mr Byrne: “He told you that.”
Ms McHugh: “He did tell me that.”
Mr Byrne: “But he said words to the effect that ‘one day we will be together’.” in December, 2011, but nothing ever changed to make that happen.
Ms McHugh: “That’s correct.”
Mr Byrne: “That’s not different from what happened from 2008 onwards.”
Ms McHugh: “Correct.”
Mr Byrne: This is the pattern that’s been going on for years?”
Ms McHugh: “It would appear so, yes.”
The jury saw a text between TMcH and Bruce Overland sent on February 20, 2012, TMcH said that she was sick of “being second best”.
“Why should I believe things are going to be any different than the past?”
It was another example of Baden-Clay “talking the talk”.
“Angry, um, frustrated, yeah… I was getting on with my life and he was getting on with his and that was an agreement with an intention to be together,” she said.
She was frustrated so hung up on him.
Mr Byrne has suggested TMcH was delusional about the future of the relationship between herself and GBC
“You remained optimistic about this relationship going further, correct?” Mr Byrne asked.
“Correct,” Ms McHugh replied.
GBC sent TMcH an email in early April 2012 promising that he would be separated by July 1
“In retrospect this is him talking the talking with you, but nothing happened,” Mr Byrne said.
TMcH reluctantly agreed.
“You’re nodding your head,” Mr Byrne said.
TMcH sighed loudly and said, “Yes.”
“I always left things to Gerard,” TMcH said.
“Of course you did, and nothing ever happened, did it?” Mr Byrne said.
“No,” TMcH replied.
Mr Byrne said: “He seemed to be getting on without you.”
“We had a long relationship that was based on love and respect for each other, it was fraught with some differences, our children were our priority so Gerard was a part of ending that relationship from my point of view, I had very strong feelings of attachment to Gerard and I wasn’t going to remain in that marriage with Rob, I couldn’t,” she said.
10:40am: Mr Byrne turned his questioning to TMcH’s last meeting with Mr Baden-Clay.
At mention of this Ms McHugh broke down in the witness box, putting her head in her hands and crying.
10:51am: Before their final meeting at Fortitude Valley TMcH was told by police that GBH had had affairs.
The defence suggested TMcH googled the women to find out about them.
“I knew of these women, I didn’t need to do Google searches,” she said.
“I knew one more than the other.”
The 31st witness, Dr Nicholas Burke, is giving his evidence via phone.
He said Allison discussed that she’s been having premenstrual mood swings,” Dr Burke said, reading from medical records.
“And a prescription was written to that effect, that Zoloft be increased from 50mg to 100mg “said Dr Burke
Dr Burke said he assessed Mrs Baden-Clay in October 2011 soon after she discovered her husband’s affair.
Dr Burke works at the Kenmore Clinic on Moggill Rd and has done so for over three years.
Allison attended the clinic between 2011 and March, 2012
Allison presented with low mood and anxiety, but she was quite resilient and displayed a high degree of insight into her mental illness and was very organised through their consultations
“My opinion was that she wasn’t at a high risk of suicide,” Dr Burke said.
“As far as I’m reading to the notes it seems to be they we related to her menstrual cycle,” he said..
Dr Bourke consulted with Allison in May, August, September and October, 2011.
He wanted to restart Allison on Zoloft medication on a dosage of 50mg.
Dr Bourke said he referred Allison to a psychologist in August 8, 2011.
A mental health plan was completed and Allison scored 18/50 on an indicative test for distress or depression, which indicated “there was not a significant level of distress at that appointment”.
Allison said that GBC was having an affair, that had been ongoing for three years, and that she was distressed and requested a referral to a relationship counsellor.
Dr Bourke said Allison also requested an STI check.
Dr Bourke said he discussed increasing Ms Baden-Clay’s Zoloft medication from 50 to 100mg each day.
“My impression of her depression was it was a relapsing … course over a number of year and this was, if you like, a routine flare-up when perhaps acute stress came along,” he said.
“My impression was this was a flare-up of her usual depressive illness over a number of years.”
He said his opinion was Ms Baden-Clay was not a high risk of suicide.
“I felt that she showed from that first consultation, even prior to the final consultation discovering her husband’s infidelity, she had a high level of resilience and had good insight,” Dr Bourke said.
Dr Bourke said Zoloft was a common “re-uptake inhibitor” anti-depressant, The anti-depressant increased the levels of a neuro-transmitter called serotonin in the brain.
He said she had never discussed feeling suicidal.
Dr Bourke agreed people could mask an depression.
“It’s possible,” he said.
Dr Burke has been excused.
Psychologist Dr Lawrence Playfair Lumsden from Life Resolutions at Kenmore has been called to the stand.
The 35th witness in the trial is Life Resolutions psychologist Dr Lawrence Playfair Lumsden.
An appointment was made with Allison to discuss her relationship with her husband on December 9, 2010.
Dr Lumsden said he administered a depression, anxiety and distress scale test if Ms Baden-Clay registered any symptoms of mood adjustment.
“Her test showed that her depression, anxiety and distress levels were absolutely normal,” he said.
Dr Lumsden said there was “absolutely zero” chance she was a suicide risk.
“She spoke about the post-natal depression but also the other issues that she’d had around depression since the time of their marriage,” he said.
“She discussed the depression as being in the past … I was so impressed that I actually hoped to encourage her fourth-year studies and come and work with me.”
Dr Lumsden said Allison told him she was teaching resilience courses at the Brookfield school.
He consulted with GBC on 14th December 2010, 21st December, 2010 and 18th January, 2011.
Dr Lumsden said the GBC’s test results were normal although his stress levels were slightly elevated.
GBC told him about his relationship with his wife.
“In the statement it says that GBC said he wanted to leave his wife, that’s a simplification,” he said.
“The question of the future of the relationship was very complex and clearly if it had been a simple, straightforward matter of one relevant party saying this isn’t going to work, I want to move on, they would have done it.”
“It wasn’t simple and so we were exploring different options about identifying exactly what needed to be done in terms of the long-term future of the relationship and alternative ways in which disengaging could have taken place.”
GBC did not discuss his affair, it was not unusual for clients not to tell him about their affairs.
“He saw me three times. We explored options, clearly there was a lot of work to do,” he said.
“I think people at that stage were stuck between the dichotomy of staying or going and we weren’t making any progress on that so we were looking at other ways of giving each other a bit of space,” he said.
Psychologist Elizabeth Nutting is giving evidence by phone.
Allison and Gerard were seen in late 2011 during three counselling sessions.
Ms Nutting took notes during their first session on 13 October, 2011.
GBC said, “‘I’m black and white on some things … my actions are not who I am. I don’t believe in depression being an illness. I believe people can snap out of it’,” Mrs Nutting said reading her notes.
“He said, ‘I’m the problem. We had a plan. I was trapped’. He said he wanted to fix it. He said he felt a failure because he couldn’t fix it.”
“She appeared to me to be a very responsible mother. I’ve got written here that she was very close to her children,” Ms Nutting said.
Ms Nutting said Allison was “quite impacted” by GBC’s affair.
“She was quite impacted by them. She wanted to keep the marriage. She knew that the marriage hadn’t been good, but she wanted to pick up the marriage. She had every hope that that would happen.”
“She said that she’d been lonely for the past four years. She said she needed a hug from someone. She said she thought about the woman that Gerard was having a relationship with, an affair with, and when she thought about that, she took a step back from the relationship and one of the things she wanted to do was to push through, like she had pushed through in her ballet lessons and her ballet performances. She just felt it was all unfair.”
“She was having flashbacks of seeing Gerard’s girlfriend’s car at the gym. I felt that this might have been holding her back from recovering and from the relationship recovering. So I really wanted to do some work with her about the trauma and the flashbacks.”
Ms Nutting said: “GBC said, ‘I don’t want to burden you,’I’ve had three years of emotional stress.'”
Ms Nutting said she saw no signs that Mrs Baden-Clay was suicidal.
“Had I picked up on that I would have contacted her doctor”.
“Allison took on that she wasn’t good enough for Gerard,” Ms Nutting said.
Under questioning from the defence, Ms Nutting described Mr Baden-Clay as a “caretaker”.
“He certainly wanted her to be fit. He didn’t want her having those flashbacks,” she said.
“I don’t know, maybe he was feeling guilty, I don’t know.”
Ms Nutting has been excused.
Counsellor Carmel Ritchie from Relationships Australia has been called to the stand.
Ms Ritchie saw both Allison and GBC on 16th April, 2012, just three days before Allison’s disappearance.
Ms Ritchie first saw Allison for a counselling session on 27th March, 2012.
Reading from her notes, she said Allison said: “I’m feeling inadequate, not good enough, I believe I let it happen. Gerard’s way is the right way. Gerard has had an affair for the last three years. Parenting – Gerard criticises me. I fear one day he will leave.”
“When I asked her what she wanted from counselling, she said, ‘to work on me, to sort lots of issues, especially parenting’.”
Ms Ritchie said she asked Mrs Baden-Clay to describe herself:
“I am a mother of three girls, 10, 8 and 5. I work with my husband in a real estate agency four days a week and at that particular time she said she had worked for the past six days running. She lived in the United Kingdom in ’98 and ’99 and 2000, she was a ballet dancer and a teacher, a high achiever. She spoke two languages and had studied psychology at university. When on her honeymoon, she took the drug Valerian as an anti-malarial medication of which she had a very severe reaction, which resulted in depression and psychotic episodes as well as panic attacks in one of her pregnancies.
“She said her husband’s attitude was “get over it”; however she was in the care of a psychiatrist named Dr Tom George since GBC’s affairs for the last three years.
Allison surprised GBC with the question on their wedding anniversary, “What’s wrong with us?” Ms Ritchie said.
GBC said, ” I’ve had enough, I want to leave”
GBC has very high expectations of the girls and of Allison, who never felt good enough
Ms Ritchie then read her notes from her counselling session with GBC in April, 2012:
“GBC said ‘Allison does not trust me. She questions me. She says yes, when she means no. I used to blame Allison for disappointments in my life,” Ms Ritchie said.
“Then I asked Gerard what he hoped to gain from counselling.
GBC said,”‘I want to build a future together, not regressing, I want to get on with life and wipe it clean”.
Ms Ritchie said tried to convince Gerard to spend 10 minutes every second night with Allison listening to her speak about her feelings about the affair for most of the session. GBC was very resistant, claiming this would be “regression”.
“I was trying to convince him of the necessity of what I was suggesting,” Ms Ritchie said.
“Allison was replying to something that Gerard had said and she repeated those words, ‘I am over the moon that you have spent this time’.
Ms Ritchie is now under cross-examination from Mr Baden-Clay’s defence counsel Michael Byrne QC.
GBC told her about his achievements, but could not remember if he spoke about his children.
“I think had Gerard mentioned his children, I would have put that down, because that was important to me. When I ask Gerard about who he is I would hope that we would mention his relationships”.
Mr Byrne asked: “But he said he wanted a future with Allison?”
Ms Ritchie replied: “Yes, he did.
Ms Ritchie has been excused
The court is now listening to the triple-0 call Mr Baden-Clay made on the morning he reported his wife missing.
The call was made at 7.15am.
Constable Kieron Ash has been called to the stand. He was one of two police officers to attend the family home when Allison disappeared.
Constable Ash said he arrived to find GBC wearing a light pink striped shirt, suit pants and cufflinks.
He also noticed GBC’s scratches on the right side of his face.
Crown prosecutor Todd Fuller QC showed Constable Ash a photograph of the scratches on Mr Baden-Clay’s face.
“On the morning, they were redder and the skin was raised,” Constable Ash said.
Constable Ash said he tried to find Allison’s mobile phone.
He searched her handbag and then searched the Baden-Clay’s two vehicles.
He did not find the phone, but did find a small EMPTY box of anti-depressant tablets in the centre console of the their Captiva. The tablets had been prescribed to Alliison.
Defence counsel suggested Constable Ash “believed something untoward had happened” after arriving at the house.
“At that point, being a police officer and a first response police officer, I thought it possible that perhaps domestic violence had taken place,” Constable Ash said.
Mr Byrne asked: “You didn’t see any sign of a struggle?”
Constable Ash replied: “No.”
My Byrne said: “You thought there might be blood and you found none.”
Constable Ash replied: “Yes, I saw no traces of blood.”
Constable Ash has been excused.
Constable Liam Braunberger has been called to the stand.
Constable Braunberger said he took details about Allison from GBC after he arrived at Indooroopilly police station on 20th April, 2012, he asked GBC whether his missing wife would have any access to money to which the reply was, “on the bones of their arse”, Constable Braunberger told the court.
Constable Braunberger has been excused.
Sergeant Andrew Robert Jackson has been called to the stand.
He said he arrived at the Baden-Clays’ house at 8.34am on 20th April,, 2012.
Sergeant Jackson said he met GBC on the front stairs and immediately noticed lacerations on his face.
“Their appearance to me was that they were slightly jaggered and the wound to me was quite recent in that it was very moist it wasn’t scabbed up at all,” Sergeant Jackson said.
The jury heard a recoding of a conversation between GBC, Sergeant Jackson and Senior Sergeant Narelle Curtis.
“What is her state of mind?” Senior Sergeant Curtis asked.
GBC said: “As I was discussing with the constable before, it’s been pretty good, she does have a history of depression. It has been managed with medication.”
Senior Sergeant Curtis asked whether Allison was taking her medication.
GBC said, “We haven’t really discussed it for a long time.”
Senior Sergeant Curtis: “Basically you and your wife are estranged.”
GBC said, “No.”
Senior Sergeant Curtis: “You’re not estranged.”
GBC said, “No.”
Senior Sergeant Curtis: “There’s no indication that you’re marriage is going to break up?”
GBC said,”I hope not.”
GBC then advised that he wanted to speak in private. The officers asked Mr Baden-Clay’s sister Olivia Walton to step outside. Mr Baden-Clay then told them about his affair.
“Obviously that has put a strain on the relationship, but we’re working through it and in fact we went and saw a counsellor on Monday,” he said.
The recording was stopped once the officers began to question Mr Baden-Clay about what his wife may have been wearing that morning.
The court has adjourned. It will resume tomorrow at 10am.
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