No murder evidence at property

NO EVIDENCE connecting an accused killer with the murder of one of his alleged victims was discovered during a police search of the man's Kalangadoo property, a court has heart.

 Stephen Roy Standage has pleaded not guilty to murdering John Lewis Thorn in August 2006 and not guilty to murdering Ronald Frederick Jarvis in July 1992.

 Inspector Mark Wright   told the court that he co-ordinated an extensive search of Mr Standage's property four days after John Thorn was found shot dead. (At that time Inspector  Wright was   a Detective Senior Sergeant.)

The court heard that plain-clothes officers discovered and documented cannabis stashes outside the accused's house, and that several vehicles were taken away for forensic testing.

Inspector  Wright told the jury that   no firearms or ammunition were discovered at the property  but  a gun-cleaning kit was found under Mr Standage's kitchen sink.

Under cross-examination, Inspector  Wright agreed that while exhibits located during the search linked Mr Standage with the cannabis trade, no pieces of evidence implicated him in Mr Thorn's murder.

The jury also saw footage of him interviewing the accused the day after Mr Thorn's body was discovered.

Inspector  Wright said he was aware by that stage that Mr Standage was the last person to see the victim alive.

``I needed to get his detailed account of what had transpired,'' Inspector  Wright told the court.

``He'd given a version of events, and my job was to ascertain whether that version of events was correct.''

Inspector  Wright asked the accused a series of questions about his movements on the day when Mr Thorn went missing and the days  after his disappearance, before Mr Standage pulled the pin on the interview after 45 minutes.

``You've gone back over it a dozen times and I've told you the same thing every time - I'm sick of it,'' Mr Standage told police.

``I've told you all that and I've had enough. I'm going.''

Inspector  Wright said by that stage the interview was coming to an end, but he didn't have the opportunity to ask an important question.

When defence lawyers asked Inspector  Wright what that question would be, he replied: ``I would have asked if he had any knowledge as to how the deceased was killed.''

The trial continues today.

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