GREEN- EYED MON­STER

How jeal­ousy drove Dane Pilcher into a rage so in­tense he mur­dered the ob­ject of his ob­ses­sion

Townsville Bulletin - - FRONT PAGE - LUCY SMITH

CORINNE Hen­der­son was on the cusp of be­gin­ning a new life.

The fly- in, fly- out mines worker ( left) had been of­fered a pro­mo­tion, her ro­mance with col­league Dwayne Wick­ham was blos­som­ing and con­struc­tion on her “dream home” was start­ing within days.

On Septem­ber 26, 2015, she had spent the day with her par­ents, Mr Wick­ham and his mother at the Townsville Cup.

But an hour af­ter she went to bed at her Idalia unit, she heard the kitchen win­dow smash.

It was her jeal­ous ex­part­ner Dane An­drew Pilcher, who had seen a Face­book photo of Ms Hen­der­son and Mr Wick­ham and had told a friend he was go­ing to “kill them both”.

He had climbed up to her third floor unit and kicked in the kitchen win­dow to get in.

Pilcher, 38, was yes­ter­day found guilty of mur­der­ing Ms Hen­der­son, 32, by stab­bing her 21 times with a kitchen knife.

The tow­er­ing killer ( right) mu­ti­lated her body – slash­ing her face, neck, hands and back – be­fore call­ing triple- 0.

Pilcher had pleaded not guilty, claim­ing self de­fence, provo­ca­tion and ac­ci­dent.

A Supreme Court jury de­lib­er­ated for 2 ½ hours yes­ter­day be­fore de­liv­er­ing their unan­i­mous ver­dict at 3.50pm.

CORINNE Hen­der­son was on the cusp of a new life.

The Townsville fly- in, fly­out mine worker had been of­fered a pro­mo­tion, her ro­mance with col­league Dwayne Wick­ham was blos­som­ing and con­struc­tion on her dream home was start­ing within days.

On Septem­ber 26, 2015, she spent the day with her par­ents, Mr Wick­ham and his mother at the Townsville Cup.

An hour af­ter she went to bed at her Idalia unit, she heard the kitchen win­dow smash – it was her ex- part­ner, Dane An­drew Pilcher.

Pilcher, 38, was yes­ter­day found guilty of the mur­der of Ms Hen­der­son, 32, by stab­bing her 21 times with a kitchen knife. He mu­ti­lated her body – slash­ing her face, neck, hands and back – be­fore phon­ing triple- zero.

Pilcher had pleaded not guilty to mur­der, rais­ing the de­fences of self- de­fence, provo­ca­tion and ac­ci­dent.

But a Townsville Supreme Court jury reached a unan­i­mous guilty ver­dict at 3.50pm yes­ter­day, de­lib­er­at­ing for two- and- a- half hours.

Pilcher did not re­act or show any emo­tion as the ver­dict was handed down.

One of his sup­port­ers gasped loudly, and his fa­ther Norm Pilcher walked out of the court­room be­fore the mat­ter was set down for sen­tenc­ing on Thurs­day.

The court heard Pilcher had been in cus­tody since Septem­ber 26, 2015, the night he mur­dered Ms Hen­der­son.

Crown pros­e­cu­tor Michael Cowen QC said when Pilcher’s home was searched po­lice found a ri­fle, am­mu­ni­tion and il­le­gal steroids.

He ten­dered doc­u­ments for Jus­tice David North’s con­sid­er­a­tion, in­clud­ing vic­tim im­pact state­ments writ­ten by Ms Hen­der­son’s par­ents and brothers.

Ms Hen­der­son’s friend Sally Jupp said the Hen­der­son fam­ily trav­elled from Tas­ma­nia for the trial, but did not at­tend court un­til the ver­dict was handed down.

She said the fam­ily, who did not wish to speak to me­dia, would be af­fected for the rest of their lives.

“( It would have been hard) hav­ing to re­live all of the de­tails of how hor­rific it was – if it was one stab, that fa­tal stab wound and that

THEIR DAUGH­TER WAS THEIR WORLD AND I DON’T THINK THAT THEY’LL EVER BE THE SAME, EVER AGAIN

SALLY JUPP, A FRIEND OF CORINNE HEN­DER­SON, SPEAKS ABOUT THE IM­PACT ON THE MUR­DERED WOMAN’S FAM­ILY

was it, as op­posed to the bru­tal­ity of the at­tack,” Ms Jupp said out­side court. “Their daugh­ter was their world and I don’t think that they’ll ever be the same, ever again.”

Pilcher was con­victed yes­ter­day af­ter a nine- day trial, in which Mr Cowen called nearly 40 wit­nesses. Pilcher chose to take the wit­ness box, and gave what Mr Cowen de­scribed to the court as a “non­sense” ac­count of be­ing stabbed first by Ms Hen­der­son.

Mr Cowen said Ms Hen­der­son and Pilcher had been in a re­la­tion­ship for about two years when she broke things off in July 2015.

Pilcher moved out and Ms Hen­der­son had been forced to change her locks.

“Text mes­sages off his phone, off var­i­ous other peo­ple’s phones, doc­u­ment what he thought of the break- up of the re­la­tion­ship, that he couldn’t seem to let it go with Corinne,” Mr Cowen said.

Pilcher’s sen­tence hear­ing will be held on Thurs­day. Un­der Queens­land leg­is­la­tion he will be sen­tenced to a manda­tory term of life in jail.

SHOCK­ING EV­I­DENCE RE­VEALED IN­SIDE

STAB­BING FRENZY: Dane An­drew Pilcher was found guilty yes­ter­day of the mur­der of Corinne Hen­der­son ( left).

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.