3 June 2024

Husband charged with murder following alleged stabbing death of 78-year-old Wanda Dorothy Uhle

| Claire Fenwicke
Police on scene at Gordon home

Manfred Uhle is accused of killing his wife, Wanda Dorothy Uhle, at their Gordon home on 2 June. Photo: Supplied.

CONTENT WARNING: This article discusses alleged domestic and family violence.

An 86-year-old man has been charged following the alleged stabbing murder of mother and grandmother Wanda Dorothy Uhle.

The 78-year-old’s body was found by police officers when they conducted a welfare check at a Gordon townhouse on Sunday (2 June).

According to court documents, her husband Manfred Uhle had driven to a relative’s Fadden home at about 7 am that day in his pyjamas and robe with no shoes on, and that he had “appeared shaken”.

When the relative asked where Wanda was, he allegedly replied, “I’ll tell you what’s happened; I just need to catch my breath”, before explaining they’d had a fight and his wife was “now sleeping”.

“[Wanda] is at peace,” Mr Uhle allegedly said.

Another relative called police to conduct a welfare check.

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When officers arrived at the Gordon home, they found her naked body in the fetal position under a blanket.

A 30 cm serrated knife was found inside, covered with a towel, along with blood in the home’s toilet, laundry and hallway.

“Police observed stab wounds to her chest and an injury to her right wrist,” the court document noted.

Officers interviewed neighbours, with one stating she had awoken at 5:45 am to a “high-pitched female scream”, while another reported hearing yelling and believed it had come from the Uhle residence.

Wanda’s cause of death was found to be blood loss as a result of multiple stab wounds.

The preliminary forensic report noted Wanda had abrasions, bruising and cuts all over her body, including her face, arms, hands, back and legs.

This included nine stab wounds in her chest.

The couple had been together for more than 60 years.

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Mr Uhle appeared in the ACT Magistrate’s Court via audio-visual link from Canberra Hospital on Monday (3 June) and was officially charged with murder.

Legal Aid defence lawyer Nathan Deakes asked the court to refer his client for a mental health assessment, which was opposed by the prosecution.

Chief Magistrate Lorraine Walker said the allegation was “one of significant violence”, but that documents before her suggested Mr Uhle had suffered “apparent delusional behaviour … or thoughts” upon his arrest and admission to hospital.

She granted a mental health assessment to be carried out at Canberra Hospital, with Mr Uhle’s matter to return to court once that has been completed.

Anyone with information about the circumstances surrounding Wanda’s death has been urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, quoting reference INV-9591. Information can be provided anonymously.

Anyone impacted by sexual, domestic or family violence can contact 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or Full Stop Australia on 1800 385 578.

Local support services include the Canberra Rape Crisis Centre on 6247 2525, the Domestic Violence Crisis Service (DVCS) on 6280 0900, and Victim Support ACT on 1800 822 272 or 6205 2022.

If this reporting has raised mental health concerns for you, call Lifeline on 13 11 14.

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