These are just my own observations from attending court, I have attended each day. I’m not the greatest at writing, so bear with me.
I write these in good faith and only for Aussie Criminals page.
I’ll use a * just to highlight points / statements made by witnesses that were interesting.
This is beginning to be like lining up at Boondall to see a concert. Fourth day in and by 9:15am the line up outside court 11 has formed a very long “L” shape. You can sense the anticipation in the air with the witnesses who we expected were to be called. It didn’t take long to realize that today was going to be a huge day.
Peter Shields rocked up pretty early before commencement this morning, compared to the previous 3 days. Family and friends of ABC started to arrive by 9:10am. It was obvious to the regulars who’d sat in previous days that seating was going to be at a premium. This was due to the extra numbers of ABC family / friends. Who could blame them for showing up to support their beloved Allison, when the likes of NBC, OW & TMcH were expected to take the witness stand.
I decided to do a runner up to the overflow court (Court 17) prior to seeing in any members of the public were going to find seats in main court. It was kind of a no brainier.
For those thinking of attending, Court 17 is EXCELLENT! It’s a split screen with judge / witness in the top left & right, prosecution / defense bottom left / right. You can actually hear what is being said.
Ironically, Justice Byrne reads out a request from the jury, could the prosecutor and defense speak a little louder. (Honestly if you haven’t got bionic hearing it’s difficult to hear everything in court 11)
10:10am The overflow court is packed, people standing in the doorway and now seated on the floor.
10:14 NBC re enters the witness box, takes a sip of water before a question has even began. He looks a tad nervous, but any perception I had of his nervousness was quickly evaporated. NBC found his groove pretty quickly. He’s a very confident speaker, especially when Michael Byrne QC was asking the questions.
- NBC tells the court that he filled in the Insurance claim forms once Allison’s death was confirmed. You only had to look around the room to see what people’s reaction to this was.
*NBC tells the court that Allison used to dress in dull colours. (Implying that is was a characteristic of her depression)
If the people in Court 17 weren’t in shock at what their ears were hearing they were now.
- NBC claims that he and EBC ONCE saw ABC out walking at 6;30am ( NBC trying to show that she took morning walks)
Olivia Walton (OW) is the next witness called
- Within 5 mins of being of the stand OW mentions the word ‘depression’ . As a member of the public observer this trial it’s easy to see that the defense’s case is going to focus on Allison’s depression (implying she committed suicide)
OW starts to get emotional on the stand
Conveniently GBC takes off his glasses and wipes a tear from his face with his handkerchief.
OW regains her composure rather quickly (2 mins after her first being emotional)
OW, just like NBC states GBC and ABC were a very private couple.
ABC picked up OW one night from hospital after OW had been suffering a quite severe headache. OW says she was surprised ABC and not GBC picked her up.
- At cross country OW took a photo of GBC who was in a business shirt mentions that GBC had been scratched by a caterpillar. OW says she gave GBC some STINGOSE to apply on the scratch.
It’s worth noting in the photo that GBC’s right eye is red. OW puts that done to GBC possibly rubbing his eye and getting some STINGOSE in it.
On the morning of April 20th OW says she was woken by EBC and said I don’t want to alarm you…..Allison is missing.
*OW claims to have sent GBC a text message to ask what route she normally walks (It would be worthwhile checking phone records to see if the stacks up)
Whilst out driving (looking for Allison) on the way to GBC’s house she claims to have sent a txt message to GBC asking what ABC was wearing.
Prosecutor asks OW upon arriving at GBC/ABC home did she notice anything strange or unusual?
**OW says she DIDN’T notice the cuts to his face straight away.
Michael Byrne QC starts questioning OW
- OW brings up Allison being withdrawn and house being dark, curtains drawn. (Which is again same testimony that NBC gave)
OW appeared to be painting the picture / planting the seed that ABC behavior showed signs of being an anxious person.
Some family & friends of ABC leave the court whilst OW is on the stand.
OW really making ABC sound like she was uncomfortable with parenting and struggling with life.
OW claims that parenting routine was difficult for ABC.
OW says that in early 2004 ABC told her that she was diagnosed with clinical depression. OW says that ABC confided in EBC the same information. (It’s worth noting I’m sure OW got the year wrong, as I thought NBC said it was 2007 which ABC confided in EBC about her diagnosis. At time of writing I’m not able to confirm what NBC said in his testimony, but it’s worth checking out. I’m sure someone’s got their years wrong)
** OW says GBC played a significant role in the parenting of their (GBC/ABC) children
OW comes across trying to show that GBC was very involved father with his children.
*** OW made the point that after searching for ABC (whilst driving to GBC place morning April 20) that it wasn’t unreasonable for GBC to call the police.
This statement doesn’t make sense. In my opinion, it implies that only after her searching that GBC should call the police. The timeline of events don’t stack up. As NBC stated GBC called him at 6;45am to inform him that Allison was missing and 7;15am (if I have my times right) GBC phones the police to report Allison missing??
OW making (the court) it look like she cared and wanted goes onto say that she wanted her and her friends to help SES to search for Allison (in the days after ABC being reported missing). But OW says she was not allowed to join the search due being told that there was no indemnity insurance cover for people like her assisting the SES should she or her friends get hurt / injured.
This statement raises a few eyebrows in my opinion.
** OW makes the point that ABC might be upset with her brother’s new baby boy being born into the Baden Clay family.
Overall I found both NBC & OW hell bent on painting ABC in a bad light. Unfortunately ABC is not alive to defend her character, but it was there for all to see the strategy the defense team is taking to target / highlight Allison’s depression (implying that she committed suicide).
Mrs Dickie takes the stand:
**GBC again removes his glasses and wipes his eyes with a handkerchief. (To me this seems rehearsed)
2 minutes later he puts his glasses back on.
- Mrs Dickie says she COULDN’T believe (when she arrived at their house on April 20) that GBC was dressed in Pink stripped shirt & tie like he was ready to go to work.
**Mrs Dickie asks GBC what happened. She goes on to ask GBC did you sleep in same bed as her last night. Mrs Dickie said GBC said YES he slept in same bed as her.
Mrs Dickie said it was later in 2011 that ABC said GBC no longer loved her.
- Mrs Dickie said since GBC and ABC marriage there had only been 1 family gathering between the Baden Clays and Dickies.
THIS WAS AMAZING TO HEAR!! Sounds like there was never any love lost between the 2 families as a whole.
** Mrs Dickie told the court that GBC/ABC house was so STERILE. Michael Byrne said to Mrs Dickie “that I put it to you the house was NOT sterile”. Mrs Dickie really took Michael Byrne to task asking him “Well what word would you suggest I use” she goes on to say how about ‘the house was very tidy”. The crowd in Court 17 errupted into loud applause (you can’t display emotion in the main court as a rule)
It’s worth noting that during this exchange which Mrs Dickie won with a knockout punch against the defense’s questioning that Michael Byrne QC was all set to show a series of photos (we don’t know exactly what they were but Peter Shields had removed them from a folder, but he declined to show them after Mrs Dickie’s epic performance.
Allison would be so very proud of her mum’s testimony. The people in court 17 certainly were.
Kerry Walker, (ABC’s best friend) said that ABC wanted to work on a happy family unit despite knowing GBC was having an affair.
KW said ABC was becoming more assertive in the months prior to her death.
KW said that in 2011 ABC was trying to rectify her marriage she said that ABC always had a positive aspect. Taking positive steps to try to make the marriage better.
KW said ABC was always very hard (critical of) on herself.
KW said that if ABC ever needed advice on anything she would seek the right person (professional) to talk to her.
Toni McHugh (TMH) said that EBC suggested she might want to join the business (real estate) as her teaching contract had / was expiring.
TMH said that in August 2008 she became close friends with GBC. She was in a 17yr (i think this figure is right) with her partner
TMH says that GBC was adamant that he didn’t have a relationship with his wife when they were discussing taking their relationship further.
At a meeting at a coffee shop GBC told TMH he wasn’t ready to leave his wife, but he was going to leave. She said GBC insisted that I will be leaving my wife.
It’s worth noting that GBC during TMH entire time in the witness stand never moved one inch he was was focused on looking at her.
So that’s my take on the day’s events.
Thanks for reading!