13 May 2022

Brawler goes for McDonalds after skatepark murder accused allegedly said he stabbed someone

| Albert McKnight
Police at Weston Creek Skatepark

Police investigating the Weston Creek Skatepark crime scene. Photo: Michael Weaver.

One of the brawlers in the Weston Creek skatepark murder trial, who dragged the 18-year-old man who died from his car, said he went out for a McDonald’s meal after the teenaged accused allegedly told him, “I stabbed someone”.

The then-15-year-old accused is facing an ACT Supreme Court jury trial charged with murdering the 18-year-old man.

Twelve people converged on the skatepark in three cars in the early hours of 27 September 2020. During the brawl that followed, a 16-year-old was stabbed in the back by the accused, who admitted committing that particular attack. An 18-year-old was also stabbed and died at the scene.

A man driven to the skatepark with two other adults in a Mitsubishi Triton testified on Thursday (12 May), during which he said he pulled the 18-year-old from his Toyota 86 and got into a fight with him until he saw a boy in the Toyota pull out a machete, which has already been described as an “imitation”.

He went back to the Triton and grabbed a shovel, “because I didn’t want to get hit by the machete”, then smashed the front windscreen of the Toyota.

He said he and the other two adults got back into their car and drove to a nearby house.

READ ALSO Cousin ‘cradled’ 18-year-old after he died in Weston Creek skatepark fight

He claimed they were walking up the driveway when the accused said, “I stabbed someone” or “I stabbed him”, then he saw “a shining thing come out of his pants”.

“I believe he lifted up his shirt and it looked like a knife,” he said.

He said he and another brawler then went to McDonald’s in Weston “because we didn’t believe what he said, we thought ‘no way'”.

At the restaurant, he said he saw the police cars, then bought food and returned to the house.

On the Monday afterwards, he returned to the house again with “everyone except [the accused]” to talk about what happened and decided to go to the police “because someone had died”.

Under cross-examination from barrister David Barrow, representing the accused, he admitted he lied to police when he originally claimed the deceased had gotten out of his car himself, instead of pulling him out.

He also admitted he saw the deceased lying on the ground.

READ ALSO Parents describe loss and love for 18-year-old son stabbed to death at Weston Creek skatepark

Footage recorded on a mobile phone was played to the court on both Wednesday (11 May) and Thursday (12 May), which Chief Justice Lucy McCallum warned jurors was “quite confronting”. In his opening address, Mr Barrow described it as “frankly, just horrifying”.

Some jurors shielded their eyes from the screen the second time it was played.

The recording was made by another man in the Triton. He told the court when he arrived at the skatepark and got out of the car, he saw the earlier witness was already fighting the deceased. He went over to help him and punched the deceased several times in the stomach.

He went back to the Triton when the machete was produced, “to find something to defend myself with”, and got a pickaxe that he used to smash the Toyota’s bonnet several times.

This man said he was putting the pickaxe back into the ute’s tray when he looked back and saw the deceased “lying on the asphalt to the front of his car”.

“I believed them to be unconscious,” he said.

The teenager who drove the Triton said he was “the only sober one to drive”, also admitted he lied during interviews with police when he testified on Wednesday.

“You were making it up as you went along,” Mr Barrow told him during cross-examination, which the boy denied. The boy said he had been “scared” and “very nervous” when talking to police.

The boy told police he didn’t move far from the Triton when he got out at the skatepark and was only out for “a few seconds”.

However, police found three of his fingerprints on the driver’s side rear fender of the Toyota, which had been about two metres away from his car.

READ ALSO Man killed at Weston Creek skatepark was stabbed up to six times, murder trial told

During cross-examination, he continued to deny approaching the Toyota.

“I do not remember touching that car,” he said.

Mr Barrow asked if, on the day after the fight, this boy had told the accused that another man, who was not one of the group who went to the skatepark, wanted to meet him to speak about the incident. The boy denied this.

The barrister also said this man had messaged the boy twice. One message, read out by the boy, said “this kid needs to turn himself in now”. However, the boy said he didn’t remember receiving the messages.

The trial continues.

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