ACCUSED LOANED $ 50 FOR PETROL
AN ACCUSED murderer borrowed $ 50 from a mate so he could buy the fuel used to burn his former partner’s body, a court has been told.
Witness Jonathon Draper told Townsville District Court yesterday he gave former soldier Kynan Watego Devenna the money after he saw him searching for a fuel can.
The court heard Devenna, who is accused of murdering Sarahjane Dower in Ayr on September 1, 2012, and then setting her car and body alight at High Range, had earlier confessed to Mr Draper that he had killed his ex- partner.
However, the court was told Mr Draper did not initially tell police about the alleged confession, but revealed the information in a second statement about two months later.
On day three of the murder trial yesterday, Mr Draper said he didn’t ask Devenna why he needed the fuel or why he was planning to drive to High Range, but said he could have guessed what the reason was.
Mr Draper said he and his fiancee had also picked Devenna up from High Range.
Devenna pleaded guilty to manslaughter on Monday, but when the Crown refused to downgrade the charge he pleaded not guilty to murder.
He also pleaded guilty to interfering with a corpse and two counts of arson.
Soldier Benjamin Robinson, who was on exercises at the High Range Army Training Area, told the court he saw a glow coming from Keelbottom Creek on September 2, 2012, after he had gone to the top of a mountain feature to call his dad for Father’s Day.
Sergeant Robinson said the following morning, as he was returning to Lavarack Barracks, his “crewie” noticed a burnt- out car.
Retired truckie Gordon Patterson was working in the area when he allegedly saw a man standing at an intersection about 3pm. Mr Patterson said he spotted a utility in “good condition” parked at Keelbottom Creek soon after he saw the man.
He said the next time he saw the vehicle there were “two blokes standing at the back of it in creamy uniforms and it looked to be burnt out”.
Forensic pathologist Professor David Williams also gave evidence yesterday and said he had examined about 14kg of “incinerated” remains from the vehicle. He said he noticed “too much free blood in the area of the voice box” indicating an injury that would be consistent with a knife wound.
Devenna is expected to give evidence today.