Gerard Baden-Clay Murder Trial Day 16 – Crown’s Closing Arguments – 8th July, 2014

Day 16

Tuesday, 8th July, 2014.

SUPREME COURT OF QUEENSLAND

SUPREME COURT CRIMINAL SITTINGS
BADEN-CLAY Justice Byrne Court 11
Floor 5
10:00 AM

Justice John Byrne

http://www.sclqld.org.au/judicial-papers/judicial-profiles/profiles/jhbyrne

The jury will retire this week to consider their verdict

‘I did not kill my wife’ says Baden-Clay

'I did not kill my wife' says Baden-Clay

Todd Fuller, “YOU killed her. You attacked her.

You smothered her. You took the life from her.”

Todd Fuller QC – Prosecutor

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The jury has entered court, with GBC, defence and prosecution waiting for Justice John Byrne to enter.

Justice Byrne addresses the jury, “You will not be sequestered, it is up to you if you want to deliberate on Fridays and weekends.”

Michael Byrne, QC continues his closing argument.

Byrne, “A person charged with a crime is not under obligation to give evidence.   Gerard spent some period explaining his life with Allison, their relationship, their problems.  You might thin that he didn’t hold back.  If you (the jury) think that Gerard’s evidence is credible and reliable, you have to find him NOT GUILTY OF MURDER.

Gerard denied killing his wife, denied dumping her body, denied leaving his girls home alone to do so.  If you think his evidence was not convincing, but left you in doubt as to what happened, he is still not guilty.

Gerard didn’t have to give evidence,  he elected to do so. Gerard exposed himself to cross examination, where he was attacked by prosecutor Todd Fuller.

Gerard wanted to tell the jury a detailed history of his lie, Gerard’s lapses were in respect to women and keeping quiet about such liaisons.  It’s not something shared with family, it is not something shared with friends.  Gerard’s only deception related to not broadcasting his straying particularly from his wife (edit and his lover.  Good grief).

He admitted all of t hat and you saw him speak to that (edit, he is an angel, he was CAUGHT THEN ADMITTED IT).

Gerard is not the type of person to explode in temper.  Apart from Allison slipping back into depression and the birth of her male nephew, things were as they always were.  I urge you to pay attention to details.  Think in the scenario of waking up to find your partner gone from their own lives.  This is not a person who is hiding, who violently murdered his wife the night before.  You should consider one piece of evidence – Gerard telling Toni to tell police the truth.  That is not someone who has just violently killed his wife.

There are two possibilities:

1.  Gerard murdered his wife and dumped her body.

2.  Gerard was worried about his wife and expected her to be found at any moment.

It is telling that Gerard on the morning of 20th April told police about the affair.  If she was dead, and he knew she was dead, why would he care?  Gerard had asked his dad and sister to leave t he room.

The jury must deliver an unanimous verdict.  You must make your decision on evidence.  The sensational media coverage has taken this case to the lowest common denominator.  You must ignore it.

The media coverage must be completely out of your contemplation.  Each member of the jury is in the best possible position to assess the evidence.  You have seen the Kholo Creek bridge, you have walked through the house.  On all the evidence, you cannot find Gerard guilty of murdering his wife.

There isn’t a cause of death, there aren’t realistic means of carrying it out.  Your verdict on the evidence must be not guilty.

Michael Byrne QC has taken his seat.

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TODD FULLER IS BEGINNING TO ADDRESS THE JURY.

It is not unknown for a person of previous good character to step outside his character.  We have been programmed to have an expectation as to how someone should behave.  We have all seen someone under pressure react in an unexpected way.

Jurors are participating in a process to determine whether Gerard killed his wife.

It is not about the mechanisms, it is about whether you are satisfied if he did it.

If you apply your experiences, your knowledge of that person to make your decisions.  A courtroom is an unofficial environment.  You can’t have a relationship with any o the people who come before you.  You are restricted to what people say in the courtroom and how they say it.  On the surface, the Baden-Clay’s appeared to be a perfect couple.  It was just a facade.

They were two desperately unhappy people, for different reasons.   Allison was a woman who battled for years to keep her marriage on track.  Gerard would go home to his family, then slink back to his mistress.  Gerard conducted an affair with a woman from the office, where his father worked.  This shows the level of bravado and confidence Gerard can use to carry off deception.   He  presented a number of faces to a number of different people, right up until his evidence in this trial.

Gerard cried when he spoke of falling in love with Allison.  What about his reaction when asked about the first time he told her he no longer loved her?  The pressures on Allison hadn’t changed for years.  The pressures on Gerard had.

The killing was the result of a set of circumstances, accumulating over time.  Gerard is a man who prided himself on his achievements.  Look at the difference between the answers Allison and Gerard gave to the counsellor when asked about themselves.  Allison said she was a wife and mother.  Gerard said he was the president of the chamber of commerce, etc.

The jury needs to decide whether Gerard killed his wife, if there was intent.  Nobody saw the killing, nobody has confessed, it means that the case is circumstantial.

A circumstantial case is a much maligned term.  It can be every bit as compelling.  The jury must look at the evidence as a while and make a decision from that.  There is a superficial attraction in looking at each piece of evidence.  It is the context of everything that each witness testifies to, is what you must look at.

Yesterday afternoon the defence discussed Allison being stressed and subdued at the hairdresser.  The defence spoke of a psychiatrist who had never met Allison.  The defence claimed she was so depressed she’d gone walking into the night never to be seen again.  In context Allison was a general manager going to a major conference.  Allison had a cold, does that put things in context?  The women at the office had told her to leave early for the hairdressers, there had been a crash, there was a lot of traffic.  Allison had made a phonecall to the hairdressers to say she was going to be late.”

Mr Fuller said the defence theory, once placed in context, could not be substantiated.

“You’ve been led astray,” he said.

Fuller is discussing the evidence of Amanda Reeves, the DNA expert.

Fuller, “Reeves told you statistically, that the blood in the car belonged to Allison Baden-Clay.  The blood was found in Allison’s car.  The other people who used the car were DNA tested.  The blood did not belong to them.  They only owned the car for eight weeks.

SHORT BREAK

Justice Byrne, “Please contemplate sitting hours of 9:00am until 4:30pm excluding weekends.”

Fuller, “Please contemplate the evidence through Gerard’s eyes”

The suggested trigger that Allison was upset over was the birth of her nephew which came six years after her last child.  The affair may have been more on her mind than Gerard’s brother having a baby boy.  The pressures were building on Gerard, personal life and business.  So what does Allison tell us in death?

You can safely conclude that her body was dumped where it was found.  It did not fall from the bridge, it did not wash up.  Her body was found 13klm from home.  It would have taken a considerable time to walk it, due to distance.

Both cars were at home, she either walked or was taken there by someone else – there isn’t any evidence of that.  Allison was a reluctant exerciser.  Do we have her walking that distance?  Even Gerard said that Allison normally walked to avoid hills.  She did not walk there to die, did not negotiate her way down to the creek bank.  The police didn’t find a single person who saw her walking.

Kayakers had to negotiate the pipes to go along the creek.  The houses are some distance away from the Kholo Creek bridge.  There is room to pull over in a car.

COURT – Pictures of the Kholo Creek bridge area.

Under the Kholo Creek bridge.

Court exhibit – Kholo Creek bridge (underneath).

Fuller, “Be careful of the presumptions they make.  The dark coloured Captiva is less conspicuous than the white Prado with personalised plates.

Gerard had sold a house nearby.  Gerard could have been at the bridge quickly in the middle of the night with no traffic.  Ten, thirteen minutes.

Court – Photographs taken on 30th April, 2012

Kholo Creek bridge.

Court exhibit, Kholo Creek bridge taken April, 2012.

There have been significant changes to the bridge area since Allison’s body was discovered.

Court – Photographs taken on 30th April, 2012

Reviews of the rainfall from 19th April to 30th April, 2012, the evening of 28th April to morning of 28th April was the only rain.  So where is the mud that is going to be there on 19th April?

There isn’t any evidence that there would have been mud there at the time.

Court – Picutre of the underneath the bridge

Fuller is discussing the differences in the slope now to the time of Allison’s death.  It has not been made steeper.  

Fuller is talking about the officer who fell when they discovered Allison’s body.  He fell negotiating a different track.  The idea of mud dissipates under the bridge, where the rain doesn’t reach.  So don’t be distracted by the mud.  The officer didn’t fall walking down or  under the bridge.  He fell in the mud by the water’s edge, below the body.

You can pull over on the right hand side of t he bridge travelling from Brookfield.  It hadn’t rained.

Court – Photographs of Allison’s body.

Her body was pushed off that ledge and fell to where she was.  That is where she remained.  The positioning of Allison’s arms and legs are consistent with her being rolled/pushed off the concrete ledge above.  There was a dent in the mud after Allison’s body was taken away.  It remained even in August.

Court – Photograph of Allison taken from the ridge above.  It shows the positioning of her arms and legs.  

You should be satisfied that she didn’t fall down there or negotiate her own way down.  She didn’t jump the bridge.

If Allison had fallen from the bridge and landed on the ground, she would have sustained serious injuries.  If Allison had fallen into a depth of water, she would have  had to have washed up onto the bank.  At best the water lapped up against her.

Allison’s body was clearly underneath the bridge, not next to it.  She had not fallen from the bridge to end up in that position.  The pathologist said that Allison’s body did not have the appearance of having been in the water.  There would have been injuries from bumping into things as she was moved by the water.”

Fuller is talking about the time lapse footage of the rise and fall of the tides used by the defence.

Fuller, “The time lapse made it seem like debris was floating past quickly.  No so, the tide takes six hours to come in and out.  It was not a constant forceful stream as it appeared in timelapse.

The pathologist said that there were post mortem changes consistent with her being in the same position from soon after death.

The top half of the body was mummified, the bottom half in mud was putrified.

For Allison to have been washed up the creek, she would still have had to have made it 13km from home.

Court – Maps of the creek

Court – Tide charts for the relevant dates

Court – Tide heights and times from the time the footage was taken for defence in June, 2014.

Fuller, “This shows the folly of their footage.  Tide heights were different, the topography was different, the water flows, etc.  There weren’t any markings in the footage to show where the body would have been.  whether there was water lapping around her body wasn’t the point.   There had to have been enough water to make  her bouyant, deposit her there and recede.

Allison’s body was at the 1.5m mark.  Tides fell below that mark during the relevant times.  Rainfall would only have affected the low tide.  You can be confident that the water never reached Allison’s body.”

Gerard has a notepad on his lap, pen in hand, listening to the prosecutor’s detail.

Fuller, “You will conclude, she was not in a depth of water.  In that case, what does that exclude?

The trial is not about establishing a cause of death.

If Allison’s body had not been so decomposed, the pathologist would have been in a better position.

The diatom expert (organisms in water) said there weren’t any in Allison’s system.  This shows that drowning is unlikely.

If Allison didn’t drown, if she didn’t fall, if she wasn’t deposited by the water, what is left?

ADJOURNED FOR 20 MINUTES

Fuller, “Allison’s body was left where it was to delay discovery.”

Court – Photographs showing someone would have to be standing on the edge of the ledge to see Allison’s body.

Fuller, “Why do you have to distance yourself from the body?  That is because you’ve killed someone.”

Fuller addresses the jury, “Do you know of anyone good at hiding things, covering their tracks, someone who has lived a lie?  Gerard corrected his evidence, saying it was his idea to put the tracking app on their phones.  Gerard claimed it was to give his wife peace of mind.  It was good peace of mind, Gerard had kept on with the affair.  Gerard knew how to turn it off, he manipulated his way around it.

Gerard gave Allison his phone to check but just deleted the calls to his mistress. “

Fuller is discussing Allison’s body and talking about the jumper wound around her head.

Fuller, “Allison’s walking attire isn’t her normal attire for walking, by the way.  Allison still had her rings on, whoever killed her did not want to remove her wedding rings.  Allison didn’t have an ID, nor money, nor a phone.

Two possible injuries to Allison, a bruise on her chest and a chip on her tooth.  Gerard had not seen a chip on Allison’s tooth.  Decomposition was consistent with death ten or eleven days earlier.”

Fuller, “Let us look at the overdose.

Experts say that the level of drug is not consistent with her death. The levels in her stomach are not consistent with having ingested any before death.  Death from Sertraline toxicity is almost unheard of.

The defence suggested that she took an antidepressant, became disorientated, somehow made it 13km then dived or fell.  Allison had been on sertraline for a line time, nearly nine years.  Her usage was closely monitored by her psychiatrist Dr Tom George.

The defence said that she had upped her dose to 100mg and developed seratonin syndrome.  Allison’s prescription had been increased seven months earlier without trouble.

On 19th March, 2012, Allison went to her G, it wasn’t about her mental health, it was for a Pap smear.  While she was there, she asked for a script for sertraline.  She had done that regularly.  Once you have a diagnosis, people can use it against you, no matter how you have adjusted.

The 19th March appointment was not about the return of a major depressive illness, it was about a Pap smear.”

Court – Photograph of the box of Allison’s sertraline, found in the console of the Captiva.

Fuller, “Gerard told  police that he knew nothing about Allison’s sertraline, that he had been searching the house for it.  Police found the sertraline in the Captiva, a foil inside.  Ten tablets, all empty, does that scream an overdose?

She doesn’t take the tablets with her, no suggestion of that.  The box contained 30 tablets, she’d had the box for over 30 days.  You might think she had taken the last tablet close to the 19th of April.  There wasn’t a sudden change in her script from 50 to 100mg.

Allison  had been supervised throughout her time using the sertraline.

The real key to Allison’s mental health was that she didn’t go back to Dr George.  Dr George was the man who fixed  her.  The alcohol in Allison’s system is consistent with decomposition.  There isn’t any evidence that Allison went on a bender, nothing around the house.  

We are now excluding jumping, falling, death from an overdose and drowning.  Allison ticked “transient suicidal thoughts” back in 2003 during her first appointment with Dr George.

There haven’t been any concerns since.

Allison’s best friend Kerry-Anne Walker describe her as “fantastic” in 2012.    Allison was involved in the school community, she was working.  She was not socially isolated.

The night before Allison put her girls to bed, she sings  one of them to sleep.  She was engaged in the business.  On 19th April, after hearing of the birth of the nephew, Allison tells Olivia she was “thrilled”.

She has “survived” the disclosure of her husband’s affair.  Up until then she had just been putting up with her husband not loving her and wanting to leave.

Dr Bourke doesn’t refer to Allison’s depression.  He just says she was upset from problems in her marriage.  Allison was “over the moon that Gerard had finally decided to engage” when they went to see the counsellor.

Going to the counsellor showed the efforts she was making again to save their marriage.  Allison was excited about going to the conference.  She’d made plans about it.

Allison wasn’t depressed, she wasn’t suicidal.  She was busy making plans.  Allison was not affected by drugs, she didn’t drown, she didn’t fall.  She did not die from natural causes.

Allison was dumped at Kholo Creek after she was dead.  This means that someone had killed her.

Police took interactive photos above Kholo bridge where Allison's body was found so they could later revisit the alleged crime scenes via computer

(Notice lack of Fishbone Fern and Crepe Myrtles?)

Was she strangled or smothered?  She wasn’t shot or stabbed.

We now turn to who did it.

Gerard was doing business as usual that night.  He sent out group work texts.  Gerard claimed that he got up after 6:00am and found that she was missing.

In the house that night, no-one hears anything, including the children.

Court – Photograph of the house, showing the girls’ bedrooms.

Fuller, “Both girls’ bedrooms at the front of the house had controls for an air conditioner. “

Court – Photography of Allison and Gerard’s bedroom.

Gerard claimed that noise travelled quickly through the house, but the bedside table had a baby monitor on it.   Why do you need a baby monitor if noise travels well through the house?

The lay-out of the Baden-Clay home.

A woman gave evidence of her daughter screaming down the street, those screams weren’t  heard in the Baden-Clay house.

Evidence from the youngest girl was that mum (Allison) came back in to check on her.  She was asked, how do you know?  She said that she knew, as she promised that she would.  One of the girls was asked what her mum was wearing that night.  She said that she can’t remember.  The girl said that she thought her mum was wearing a sloppy jumper and pyjama pants.  The girl was positive that it wasn’t her work clothes.   Is it conceivable that she had on the clothes she was found in?”

Fuller will talk about where her death occurred.

Fuller, “Allison’s body tells us one more thing.  That is the leaves.”

Court – Photograph of the leaves and twigs found in Allison’s hair.

Fuller, “They inexplicably link Allison Baden-Clay to the house and her death to the house.  The leaves were found in and around her hair and her jumper.

Botanist Dr Gordon Guymer had to physically disentangle the leaves from her hair.  What is the possibility that all six were deposited by the creek and no other types of foliage?

What is going to be in the creek?  The plants growing around the creek?  None of those ended up in her hair. 

Could this man be so unlucky?  Of those six plants, only two are located in the area.  Not the vicinity, in the area.  It is not like she’d be lying underneath a Chinese Elm.  Seven crepe myrtle leaves were in her hair.

The court heard the girls detailing the last evening they saw their mother in the family home at Brookfield

There wasn’t any Crepe Mytle found at the creek.  At her house there is a Crepe Myrtle at the front of the house, next to the carport, next to the driveway, and the back of the house.

Neighbour Kim Tzvetkoff said he heard a woman's 'loud exclamation' from the Baden-Clay house across the road sometime between 7.30 and 9pm on April 19, 2012

Court – Photograph of Crepe Myrtle leaves covering the back patio area.

Gerard Baden-Clay wiped away tears in court on Thursday as taped interviews with his three daughters were played

(Have a look at the back window, can you,if you look for a while, see a large female face, seemingly etched in the glass?).  Very sad.

It is not just that they were there, they were there in the highest proportion.  Seven found in her hair.  They inextricably link Allison Baden-Clay to the house, and her death to the house.”

Fuller is talking about the Cat’s Claw Creeper that was found in and around the carport of the house.

LUNCH UNTIL 2:30PM

Fuller continues to speak about the leaves in Allison’s hair.

Fuller, “Eucalyptus was found in Allison’s hair.  There was a fair amount of litter in the backyard.   Chinese Elm was found at Kholo Creek but also one at the house.  One leaf was found on Allison.  The Fishbone Fern grew to 90cm.

Think about where your head would be to come into contact with a 90cm plant.”  Fuller gestures like he is holding something.

Court – Photograph of the leaf litter over the back patio.

Fuller, “There isn’t Lillipilly at Kholo Creek, there is one in the front of the Baden-Clay yard.

One Lillypilly, one Chinese Elm, lots of Crepe Myrtle, lots of Fishbone Fern, lots of Cat’s Claw Creeper.

The combination of all six plants are at the house.  All six are in her hair.  Then we get to the creek where there is a Eucalyptus and a Chinese Elm.

The only conclusion you can draw is that her head came into full contact with the lea litter at the Brookfield house.  Was there a struggle?  Was she dragged?  Does that explain the Cat’s Claw Creeper leaves detaching into  her hair?   Otherwise, they have all fallen from somewhere else, and have ended up in the creek at the same time, and come into contact with Allison.  Otherwise, they have fallen into the creek somewhere else at different times and somehow all ended up on Allison.

This is what connects her to the  house, ladies and gentleman.

I will now speak about the Captiva.

There are three rows of seats in the Captiva.

Court – photograph of the middle row.

When the police find the Captiva, the back row of seats are down, baskets of toys have been put in the back.

Several police looked at the car during the day and didn’t notice any blood in the back.  That is because it was next to the footwell, which was covered by the rear row of seats when they were folded down. The blood was hidden from view unless the seats were folded up.

If you didn’t know it was there, would you see it?  They only had the car since 25th February, 2012.  No-one was aware of any reason for the blood to be there, or of any previous injuries.  There wasn’t a blood trail in or out of the car.  Gerard did not take his Prado when looking for Allison that morning.  If you are alarmed that your wife is missing, why haven’t you taken the first vehicle you come to?

He, instead, reversed the Captiva out.  The roads he takes are the perimeter of where the police later triangulate her phone.  We know Allison took the children to school the day before in the Captiva.  They put their bags in the back, no toys.

Allison was at the hairdressers until late.  It is unlikely that she would then have put the toys in the car when she returned home.  Allison’s blood, in the car, supports the Crown’s theory that some violence was done to her.”

Fuller talks about the scratches.

Fuller, “Where the scratches an indelible mark left on Gerard’s face by his wife?   The defence’s claim was that he didn’t try to hide the scratches, that it is another one of his virtues.

Gerard told his nine year old daughter he had cut himself with a blunt razor.  What a terrible thing that on this one morning, when he was in a hurry, he does his, “shit, shower, shave” in the wrong order.  One of the girls said that her dad shaved before his shower that morning.

Gerard said that he was rushed.  If you have to do the same two things, is it any quicker to do them in the reverse order?

Nigel asked his son what the marks on his face were.  The police also asked.

Court – Photo of Gerard with the scratches visible on his cheek.

When the next police arrived, he volunteered the information.  They asked one question.  Same with the next lot of police. One police officer suggested that the marks didn’t look consistent with shaving cuts.  Gerard repeated his story.  Gerard wasn’t pushed, or challenged or interrogated.

Priscilla Dickie noticed the scratches, so did Kerry-Anne Walker.  There wasn’t any mention of the other injuries at that time.

Court – Photograph.  Fuller is pointing out the smaller marks at the bottom of the larger marks.

When it is suggested that he didn’t try to cover the marks on his face, they should look at the smaller cuts on the bottom.  Gerard knew he would have to explain the cuts.  He made up the false explanation and started by telling his children.

The next day he went to see the doctor.  That doctor didn’t make any mention of the smaller cuts.  You might think that they had healed.  Gerard told the doctor that he had made the cuts in one motion.   He told others in three motions.

He then, of course, gave the doctor his business card.

Gerard’s visit to the doctor later that day revealed all his other injuries, including the one near his shoulder.   The marks by his shoulder were never explained.  They are consistent with someone pulling on his clothing.”

Fuller shows another photo of the cuts on Gerard’s face.  “He is starting to grow a beard ladies and gentleman.

The pictures are taken on 21st April.  Gerard didn’t shave again.  Gerard explained that day that he had been startled while shaving, rather than rushed.

Gerard’s evidence on the stand was that he stopped, then went again.

The second GP was of a view that Gerard’s razor was not consistent with causing marks on his face.  Dr Griffiths saw him two days later.  A forensic specialist.  Dr Griffiths described the scratches as irregular, not straight as yu’d expect from a razor.  Dr Griffiths thought they “could not” have been caused by the razor.  Three experts were given the photographs of the scratches to look at.  All three saw it the same way, all used the same language.

Dr Hoskins said, “typical of fingernail marks”.  Raggedy and parallel.   The smaller scratches down the bottom appeared to have been caused by a razor.

Dr Stark calls the marks abrasions.  Dr Star also said “consistent with fingernail injuries”.  Dr Stark did not consider the marks typical of shaving injuries.

The evidence from Dr Wells was that the first thing that came to mind was fingernails or a canine claw.  Dr Wells could not see a mechanism whereby they could be caused by the razor.  The marks occurred after his children went to sleep and before they got up.  After they last saw their mother and before they got up to find her missing.  They can’t say whose DNA was under her fingernails but there was a possible second contributor.

There was a struggle.  Allison had left her mark upon Gerard.  One of the things the jury must find is intention.

This is close quarters, close up violence.  They were in arms reach of each other.   The only injury she could do to him was the scratch to his face.  She was unable to raise the alarm.  She was unable to cause any injury to him other than the face.

Does that not speak of the mechanism that was used?  If it was efficient and effective,  what is in the mind of the person inflicting the violence?  Is it such a virtue that Gerard lied about the scratches and tried to cover them up?

How was he going to hide them from the people he had to deal with that day?

How long was that going to be a secret?”

Fuller mentions the phone, placed on charge at 1:48am.

“The only person to back that Allison had his  phone all night is Gerard.

Would Allison have gone around the side of the bed to Gerard’s side to plug it in?

SHORT BREAK.

Fuller is talking about the pressures on Gerard at the time.

Fuller, “Gerard had pressures from business, pressures from his wife and pressures from his mistress.

It isn’t about Allison and her state.  It is about Gerard.   Gerard had the ability to recall his travels and his honeymoon while on the stand.  What level of detail did he have when describing his conversations with Toni?  What is more important, is that hose conversations he recalls from when Lady Di died.

It was more important to Gerard to play up his wife’s battle with depression.   Gerard took it upon himself to “help you out” with details of Allison’s illness.

Gerard was caught out with the testimony of Ms Nutting, counsellor, who said Gerard didn’t believe in depression.  

Toni wasn’t a “flash in the pan, oh I need sex”,  he was with her for three years.

Gerard throws in that the medication made Allison put on weight.  That it affected  her libido.  Gerard tried to turn his affair with Toni into a virtue.  He was counselling her over relationship problems.

Gerard resumed with Toni after Allison found out.  The ground rules had changed then, this was done by Allison, who was no longer putting up with Gerard’s behaviour.

The emails between Gerard and Toni were much more than him placating her. As early as 2009 he told Allison that he didn’t love her and wanted to leave.

The ultimate insult was telling staff that he still loved Toni after Allison found out about the affair.  It is a matter for the jury to consider Carmel Ritchie’s testimony about Gerard not being keen on her advice.

Gerard claimed that there was no financial pressure.  His call to Sue Heath had him in tears, saying that he would go bankrupt.  

On 1st May, it wasn’t just a call to the insurance to advise them of the death.  He made inquiries about making a claim.

There had to be strains in the marriage from at least 2009.

So supportive of Allison’s depression was Gerard, that he had an affair with Michelle Hammond.

He had been in a relationship with Toni for a year when he and Allison went to see Dr George.  When Gerard and Toni got together, she was still living with her partner of 17 years.

There is a contrast between Gerard and Toni in that Toni separated from her partner.

Is Gerard  the perfect dad by coming home to his children each night?  He said that afterwards he would meet his mistress.

Not everything was content with his relationship with Toni, as we’ve heard about Jackie Crane.  They planned for Jackie to stay with him at the conference.

In 2009, Dr George said that Allison was symptom free, despite she and her husband living separate lives.

Another psychologist wanted Allison to come and work for him once she’d finished her studies.

In 2010 Allison confides to her best friend that Gerard said that  he didn’t love her anymore.  Allison didn’t confide in her best friend about the affair. She protected him, she was loyal.

Court – Allison’s journal.  “I have a loving marriage with a wonderful relationship and great sex.”

Allison speaks of her daily disciplines.   Exercise, supplements, listening to a CD, and drinking water.

Court – Allison’s gratitude list.  One reference is to her husband, with  A woman who is scared to drive?

One reference with regard to a loving text that she had received from him.

Another page – “The flash car I was able to drive today” on the gratitude list.  A woman who is too scared to drive?

Allison’s mention of Gerard “being a gadget person”.

Allison was grateful for “Snowy the Prado” which is mentioned in her journal.

In 2010 Allison consults with Dr Lumsden, psychologist, as she wants the doctor to speak to Gerard.

In August, 2010, Allison writes that she is the happiest when she is with her family and friends.

Journal:  I wish my marriage was like it was before the ceremony.

Journal:  I would give anything if my partner would make love to me.

Journal:  If my relationship ends it will be because Gerard has had enough and doesn’t love me anymore and all the crap I have dished…

Fuller, “This is an insight into Allison.

Journal:  I would give anything if my partner would love me and make love to me.

Journal:  If my relationship ends it will be because I didn’t work hard enough.

Journal:  Maybe I am still harbouring regrets about getting married and whether I made the right decision.

Fuller, “You might think that Allison’s harshest critic was Allison.  She wasn’t afraid to look at herself in the mirror and ask what she could do to make  things better.  Allison knew Gerard didn’t love her.  Her best friend suggested he might be having an affair.  There wasn’t any return to depression.  The new Allison gave her husband an ultimatum.

Allison said that, ” it is her or me”.  She told him that Toni would no longer work for them.

Allison was the one who tried to share his goals, his passions, by joining the business.  How did Gerard repay her?  He phoned and emailed Toni.  Of course, after telling other staff he still loved Toni.

Gerard claimed that he wanted to do anything to help Allison.  Really?  He didn’t believe depression was an illness.

Allison wanted to pick up her marriage and make it work despite everything that had happened.  Allison had flashbacks of seeing Toni’s car.  How would she react to seeing her at the conference?

It is Gerard, not Toni, who resumes the relationship.  Gerard made the decision to go back.  They now had brief windows of contact.”

Court – Email between Toni and Gerard.  Toni is telling how she feels about being the “other woman.”

The next email Toni recovered, they were planning a life together.

Email Gerard to Toni – “I have given you a commitment and I intend to stick to it.  I will be separated by 1st July.”

Fuller, “Gerard was in love with Toni.  This man wanted to be with Toni McHugh.  However, he was straddling the fence.  He didn’t have the courage to stay, he didn’t have the courage to go.

Email Gerard to Toni – “This is agony for me too.  I love you,..Leave things to me now…I love you..”

Fuller, “Leave things to me – does that mean leave me alone?  This is at an end?  It is still a relationship, it is still ongoing, it just has taken a different form because now he is under a tighter leash.  While Toni is discussing rental properties for them, Allison is speaking of their marriage counsellor.

Toni had told Gerard that if he had to make a choice and his choice was his wife, that’s OK.

Toni fell for the Baden-Clay product and fell hard.

.

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46 thoughts on “Gerard Baden-Clay Murder Trial Day 16 – Crown’s Closing Arguments – 8th July, 2014

  1. Hoping today for justice being served for Allison. Go prosecution – do your ‘darndest’ to expose and avenge the ‘dastardly’ deeds that were committed by a callous killer! Justice for Allison!!!!!!!!

    It’s also time to reflect and I think I have learnt two valuable lessons from this trial:
    1) Psycopath alert!! – The need to educate people, especially young people embarking on finding a life partner, of the tell tale signs of psycopathy, and to run a mile when they see them. If Allison recognised the red flags the tragedy may not have happened.
    2) Report information!! – The need for members of a community to report anything they hear or see that is unusual and could potentially mean someone is in trouble, taking proper note of details such as the exact time, vehicle license plate numbers and descriptions of people sighted. In this tragic case this would have made all the difference. Someone seemingly reported seeing ‘something’ at the Kenmore roundabout, supposedly one or more people struggling with a moving object. Imagine if they reported the car license plate with this detail, the difference it could have made if it was a BC or related vehicle! Ditto for cars seen in the early morning hours parked near the Kholo bridge – turn around, pass again, record a number plate number!! What a difference this little detail would have made. Numerous people heard blood-curdling screams, NOT one reported them. Imagine if everyone did and the Indooropilly police station was inundated with calls from concerned residents that night and responded immediately, they would likely have stumbled upon a crime in progress or freshly committed, with one or more vehicle engines piping hot, a killer covered in tell-tale mud, perhaps disposing of clothes/shoes, etc….Apathy and silence plays into the hands of criminals. We now have the benefit of hindsight – I hope each and every person who was outraged about Allison’s murder will take this on board and ACT upon any/all suspicious goings-on in future. I sure will.

    Liked by 4 people

  2. One of defence’s mistakes is to forget Olivia’s children of whom Allison’s children enjoyed their company and had sleep overs.

    Son……son………son…………

    Allison had Olivia’s children, including a son, over for sleepovers, she wasn’t upset about his existence as the defence claims – a grandson born so that was Allison’s motive to kill herself.

    Let us hope the jury are thinkers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Agreed Moonlight, this is a ridiculous idea! I wonder if OW changed her name to include Baden so that her male offspring would pass on the Baden name. If so these people have such a ridiculous value system, believing a name (which is not even their natural one!) is so important. They really should wake up and realise that they need to earn people’s respect with their behaviour, not rely on a distant ancestor’s name (who incidentally has a somewhat blemished past if info that surfaced is correct).

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Desperately covering all bases:

    Michael Byrne, QC continues his closing argument.

    Byrne, “A person charged with a crime is not under obligation to give evidence. Gerard spent some period explaining his life with Allison, their relationship, their problems. You might thin that he didn’t hold back. If you (the jury) think that Gerard’s evidence is credible and reliable, you have to find him NOT GUILTY OF MURDER.

    Gerard denied killing his wife, denied dumping her body, denied leaving his girls home alone to do so. If you think his evidence was not convincing, but left you in doubt as to what happened, he is still not guilty.”

    .

    Like

  4. Byrne, “Gerard wanted to tell the jury a detailed history of his lie, Gerard’s lapses were in respect to women and keeping quiet about such liaisons. It’s not something shared with family, it is not something shared with friends. Gerard’s only deception related to not broadcasting his straying particularly from his wife (edit and his lover. Good grief).

    He admitted all of t hat and you saw him speak to that” (edit, he is an angel, he was CAUGHT THEN ADMITTED IT).

    Like

  5. Byrne, “You should consider one piece of evidence – Gerard telling Toni to tell police the truth. That is not someone who has just violently killed his wife.

    There are two possibilities:

    1. Gerard murdered his wife and dumped her body.
    2. Gerard was worried about his wife and expected her to be found at any moment.

    It is telling that Gerard on the morning of 20th April told police about the affair. If she was dead, and he knew she was dead, why would he care? Gerard had asked his dad and sister to leave t he room.

    The jury must deliver an unanimous verdict.”

    a) Well, GBC was referring to the truth that he was having an affair with Toni that everyone knew about.
    b) GBC “cared” as he was trying to cover his butt, and that is all, that is why he shaved over the fingernail scratch marks, why he said a screwdriver went into his hand, rather than Allison’s tooth breaking off and her bleeding.

    He is used to deception and ONLY admits to it when discovered.

    Like

  6. Honestly? Really, “lowest common denominator” – that is YOU BYRNE, making things up about Allison, half truths, lies, when you knew it!

    Byrne, “The jury must deliver an unanimous verdict. You must make your decision on evidence. The sensational media coverage has taken this case to the lowest common denominator. You must ignore it.”

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Whew – Fuller is doing a good job:

    Fuller, “Yesterday afternoon the defence discussed Allison being stressed and subdued at the hairdresser. The defence spoke of a psychiatrist who had never met Allison. The defence claimed she was so depressed she’d gone walking into the night never to be seen again. In context Allison was a general manager going to a major conference. Allison had a cold, does that put things in context? The women at the office had told her to leave early for the hairdressers, there had been a crash, there was a lot of traffic. Allison had made a phonecall to the hairdressers to say she was going to be late.

    Defence asked you to look at things superficially. You were being led astray.”

    Liked by 1 person

  8. It appears Mr Fuller has a full head of steam today , hope he keeps it up … would’ve been interesting to see the jury’s demeanor / body language with Mr Byrne and then with Fuller .

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, Mike, to all.

      Sad for Allison said that she is going in today, so we’ll receive one of her wonderful reviews.

      I bet that she is feeling much better, after listening to Fuller.

      Like

  9. Fuller, “If Allison’s body had not been so decomposed, the pathologist would have been in a better position.

    The diatom expert (organisms in water) said there weren’t any in Allison’s system. This shows that drowning is unlikely.

    If Allison didn’t drown, if she didn’t fall, if she wasn’t deposited by the water, what is left?”

    Liked by 1 person

    • One of the reports i read and remember clearly was the ‘Diatom ‘ expert ( being slow , i had to look up what a diatom was) he actually stated drowning did NOT occur , if it had , diatoms would be present and there were none.

      Liked by 1 person

      • This is what got me about Byrne, Mike. He knew the facts and then, basically, tried to have the jury not see them. Such an important fact. Let us hope that it is their undoing.

        Liked by 1 person

        • What a job to do for $ – to legally lie with and on behalf of an even bigger liar, in order to potentially try and effect a gross miscarriage of justice…??? One wonders about such a system as a whole, and how well it is equipped to deliver JUSTICE…

          Like

  10. Fuller is doing a good job:

    Fuller, “Allison’s body was left where it was to delay discovery.”

    Court – Photographs showing someone would have to be standing on the edge of the ledge to see Allison’s body.

    Fuller, “Why do you have to distance yourself from the body? That is because you’ve killed someone.”

    Fuller addresses the jury, “Do you know of anyone good at hiding things, covering their tracks, someone who has lived a lie? Gerard corrected his evidence, saying it was his idea to put the tracking app on their phones. Gerard claimed it was to give his wife peace of mind. It was good peace of mind, Gerard had kept on with the affair. Gerard knew how to turn it off, he manipulated his way around it.”

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Fuller getting the “basket” (GBC), go Fuller,

    “The 19th March appointment was not about the return of a major depressive illness, it was about a Pap smear.”

    Court – Photograph of the box of Allison’s sertraline, found in the console of the Captiva.
    Fuller, “Gerard told police that he knew nothing about Allison’s sertraline, that he had been searching the house for it. Police found the sertraline in the Captiva, a foil inside. Ten tablets, all empty, does that scream an overdose?”

    Like

  12. Go Fuller,

    Fuller, “Gerard had pressures from business, pressures from his wife and pressures from his mistress.

    It isn’t about Allison and her state. It is about Gerard. Gerard had the ability to recall his travels and his honeymoon while on the stand. What level of detail did he have when describing his conversations with Toni? What is more important, is that those conversations he recalls from when Lady Di died. It was more important to Gerard to play up his wife’s battle with depression.”

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Fuller, “Gerard claimed that there was no financial pressure. His call to Sue Heath had him in tears, saying that he would go bankrupt.

    On 1st May, it wasn’t just a call to the insurance to advise them of the death. He made inquiries about making a claim.”

    Liked by 1 person

  14. SHAME ON YOU OW – A “CHRISTIAN WOMAN” (OW claimed Allison had depression and that Allison was scared to drive).

    Allison’s gratitude journal – “The flash car I was able to drive today” on the gratitude list. A woman who is too scared to drive?

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Dearest “S” from Feedback.

    You are very welcome. I think that we are all drawn together because all we want to do is, in some way, give some help. We would like to feel that someone cared.

    Here, we all care, and you do, too, “S”.

    Please feel free to post here. You have brought tears to my eyes, and goosebumps as well, I think I might have a big cry, now, of relief, as we have all been so worried over the darling Dickie family, it is just too sad and so wrong.

    Hugs,
    Moonlight.

    Liked by 2 people

  16. Re Fuller’s comment at 3:20pm: Mr Fuller said DNA “belonging to someone else” was found under the fingernails of Mrs Baden-Clay’s left hand.
    “Her left hand scratching the right side of his face,” Mr Fuller said.
    He said the scratches on Mr Baden-Clay’s face were there “damning”.
    “They are damning and link him to the act of violence without any doubt,” he said.

    WOW – this is BIG!!! I did not know they found DNA from another person under Allison’s one fingernail!!! I hope they have an analysis that states it is GBC’s!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Game…set….match….

    Like

    • Yes I didn’t know this either and I wondered if I had missed something. Whose is it and why have the police not clobbered him over the head with this one?

      Like

  17. So …… DNA from Allison’s left hand fingernails was found.
    That same DNA belonged to someone else.
    Very interesting.
    (Or should I say, very ……. expected.)
    Until today, I never realised that any DNA was retrieved at all.
    I wonder who owned that DNA that was found under Alison’s fingernails? Surely not someone she scratched? Surely not someone she fought for her life with?
    Someone had fingernail scratches on his right side cheek.
    BTW This Fuller fellow has my utmost admiration.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Greetings Fellow Seekers of Justice,
    I was so heartened today by the Prosecution today, punching in all the right places with compelling facts but still leaving enough room for the individual jurors to fill in the gaps, allowing them to feel as if they’ve come to their own conclusion. The Defence didn’t do that, too heavy handed, didactic, and would likely provoke a response akin to a teenager being told what to think.
    I do have a question about Allison’s phone, I’ve tried to find how long it gave a signal for and how, but have nothing solid apart from it being switched or activated early the morning she was reported missing by the Talking Clay.
    If it was part of his strategy (as seems likely) to have her phone just traceable enough, but not findable, how is that done, technically? ( Fuller’s mention of GBC’s looking for Allison driving along the perimeter of the phone triangulation was a masterstroke) Did he just put it somewhere inconspicuous on his feeble “search” drive and hope for the best? I had thought that with modern sim cards that they are quite easy to track? Could he have done it remotely, rationing battery power for a length of time?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Welcome Varmintvacuum,

      Lovely to see you, we look forward to chatting with you 😀

      I agree, this was a masterful stroke, “Fuller’s mention of GBC’s looking for Allison driving along the perimeter of the phone triangulation was a masterstroke”.

      Hopefully, someone may be able to answer your question with regard to the phone. The area, as you may know, has wide grassy footpaths along with Brookfield creek. There are lots of weeds along the creek, there is also the Brookfield graveyard, whereas sometimes, the holes are pre-dug for use the next day.

      You know what keeps sticking in my mind when this subject is raised?

      The news video of NBC returning home with GBC, he greeting EBC, she patting his pocket, her jubilation after patting his pocket, and they then kiss deeply in front of the TV crew while NBC begins to pull down their roller door at Kenmore.

      Like

  19. Hi everyone
    It’s has been extremely interesting being in court for the past two days. My apologies that I haven’t had time to read all your comments. When Byrne gave his summary on Monday it was at times utterly boring and repetitive as he went through the points of evidence and tried to discount them one by one. On that day I managed somehow to get into the main court. It is very formal and quite uncomfortable. NBC and EBC were sitting directly in front of me, Adam’s wife, OW and Adam to their right.

    EBC strikes me as very odd, blinking hard much of the time and pursing her lips constantly. At one point she fell asleep on Monday! I think she’s either not very bright or heavily medicated (or both). When Byrne was discussing Carmel Ritchie’s advice to GBC and Allison to discuss his affair for 10-15 mins ever second night, EBC shook her head constantly and leaned over to NBC and whispered “that was very foolish of her” meaning Carmel Ritchie. I honestly think she’s in denial and believes this was all the counsellor’s fault for allowing the discussion!!!

    I was acutely aware of Allison’s parents, and so many of their extended family there to support them, including Allison’s brother and sister who sat with them. I just don’t know how they managed to sit through the vile and untrue testimony about their daughter given by Byrne, which you’ve all read about. I was lucky to sit next to one of Allison’s extended family and they are genuinely surprised about the support for Allison and the level of public interest. I could see Allison’s father from where I sat and towards the end you could see he was literally seething by the expression on his face, but couldn’t react.

    Mr and Mrs Dickie are apparently doing a fantastic job of looking after the girls, who according to the person I sat next to are such happy girls. They visit their father every 3 weeks in jail, and spend every 3rd weekend with the BC’s and are reluctant to go to the latter (unsurprisingly.) Apparently they don’t have TV at home, buy newspapers or have access to the internet. It was pointed out that it’s lucky the trial is happening during school holidays so they aren’t accessing information via friends. I truly hope this remains the case, as to hear your father’s defense case against your deceased mother would be impossible to bear. It is the lowest of the low the way the defense have painted a vibrant and intelligent mother, who can no longer speak for herself. It was really sickening.

    When images of Allison’s body are shown on the screen, the family are somehow warned (I couldn’t pick up how) and leave the room. The images are shocking. At this session on Monday I could see the jury clearly. They’re a mixture of ages, the youngest I’d say in their 20’s and the others 30, 40 and 50’s. Three of them looked very attentive and wrote notes (as did Justice Byrne and Fuller), others looked somewhat bored and vague in the morning session. They have a screen in front of each of them, and a huge pile of notes which are obviously printed for them to refer to afterwards.

    The afternoon session became more ‘interesting’ but also more upsetting when Byrne finally presented his version of how Allison died, after painting GBC to be the pillar of society who had ‘never exhibited violence in his life’. I’d love to know how we’re supposed to believe this, as GBC has done a good job himself of showing that he lived a duplicitous life for decades, is a consummate liar and will do anything to get out of a situation. How would any of know what he was like behind closed doors?? The jury looked more alert during this session and frowned quite a bit, but aren’t allowed to smile/shake their heads/roll their eyes etc.

    I was so frustrated and angry when Monday’s session finished, as for some reason thought both sides would sum up on the one day, and we were left with this awful proposition of how Allison’s life had ended. So I just had to take another day’s leave yesterday (my annual leave) to find out how Fuller would change things around for the jury. I’ll post this separately.

    Liked by 4 people

  20. Yesterday, when Byrne finished his summary (finally!) and Fuller began his, I was in the main Banco Court in the morning which is very large and was three-quarters full. The images of court proceedings are displayed on very large screens and you can hear better than in the main court but the resolution is not great and I could only see GBC as a blur on the screen. I met and sat with two lovely women – everyone is very friendly and polite, and quiet while the court proceedings are happening.

    I won’t go into too much detail, but Fuller did a great job and told the jury they didn’t need to know how Allison was killed, but just that she was, and that it was done with intent. They didn’t need to weigh up each individual piece of evidence, but look at the big picture, comparing the parts of evidence to dots on a TV screen that aren’t clear when you get up very close to it, but are clearer when you stand back. I thought that was a really good analogy.

    He used the comparison of Allison and GBC’s personalities to describe their relationship, and suggested they were two very unhappy people for many years, for different reasons. Fuller said that GBC had said in front of the psychiatrist Dr George in 2009 that he no longer loved Allison and was thinking of leaving the marriage. In 2010 Allison told her friend Kerry-Anne and her mother that he no longer loved her. This paints GBC in a very different light to the testimony he gave!

    Basically Allison spent years trying to save their marriage while he was betraying her and sleeping around, right up until she died. I smiled internally when Fuller called GBC “this man” a few times yesterday with a huge emphasis on the THIS! He did a really good job for Allison, speaking for her from her grave and her family must have appreciated this so much. He really showed who Allison was, and how much she’d put up with for so long with THAT man. She was strong and loyal, the opposite of him.

    I think Fuller has a really good handle on GBC’s narcissism, although he never said the word and wouldn’t as that could open another whole can of worms I guess if GBC then decided to claim he was mentally unstable. It was good to see him point out how GBC always had to look good while manipulating everyone around him, and was derisive of how even immoral things he did he tried to make into a virtue. It came across really clearly and well.

    In the afternoon we went into a court on level 6 which is another overflow court the same size as the one the Judge, jury and accused are in. It’s much smaller than the Banco room and the resolution on the screen is much clearer. GBC stares ahead all the time, sipped very little water I noticed (perhaps that’s when he’s nervous?) I could see him more clearly in this courtroom and he has no expression on his face but I did notice when several images of Allison’s body were shown for say 5 to 10 minutes, he did not ONCE look up but was looking down at the file in front of him. You can’t see the jury unless you’re in the main courtroom so I can’t comment on their reaction to yesterday’s proceedings unfortunately.

    Fuller spent a lot of time on the leaves in Allison’s hair and put the point across really well to question how they came to be there, the obvious conclusion being her being low on the ground on the back patio of the house. He also countered all Byrne’s claims from the day before that the marks on GBC’s face were most likely scratch marks and spent time on the medical evidence to prove this. He also showed Allison’s diary in quite a lot of detail from 2010 onwards, when GBC was wanting to leave the marriage and it gave a good indication of her trying to solve problems, being hard on herself and trying to improve herself and work on the marriage, while GBC was doing the opposite. It came out that she felt lonely, wanted her husband to love her and even mentions having sex during the time when he said they had none – oops GBC, more lies!

    I think he’s got a fair bit more to say today, but I am so heartened that the truth is coming out and Fuller speaks in a natural and clear way using many photos to make his point. He also did a fantastic job stating that access to underneath the Kholo Bridge was not as steep 2 years ago, and clearly showed how Allison could have been dropped from the concrete ledge below the bridge as her body was lying 1 or 2 meters below this on a flat part which then slopes down very steeply to the creek. I felt really positive after yesterday but sadly have to go into work today.

    Jr Byrne consults both barristers and appears to be writing up his summary at the moment. When the jury leave for a break, while the public are still in the courtroom, he asks them both whether they agree with what he is going to say, which I thought was interesting. The three of them change a few words here and there as they go along. Given how long the defense and prosecution have summed up for, I think the Judge’s summing up and direction to the jury will go for some length of time as well, so will possibly only finish tomorrow. If anyone is considering going in I would HIGHLY recommend it as it’s difficult to portray the atmosphere, tension and light moments without experiencing it yourself.

    Liked by 4 people

  21. SFA, Thank-you hugely for this report.
    You wrote:
    I smiled internally when Fuller called GBC “this man” a few times yesterday with a huge emphasis on the THIS!
    How good to hear these words.
    Because when Byrne for the defense said the words: “THIS woman” referring to Allison, I cringed inwardly.
    Sounded like he was referring to some sort of vermin.

    So I was very relieved and grateful that Fuller spoke as he did. With emphasis on the THIS!
    Thank you again, SFA, for being our eyes and ears.

    Liked by 4 people

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