NOT Gerard Baden-Clay.
Unfortunately for him, the lying, the smarmy schmoozing, the jokes he throws in mid-story to ‘bond’ with his listener… all the ‘techniques’ that have gotten him this far in life have just lost all effect. I strongly suspect at some indiscernible point on Thursday after he took the stand, he somehow forgot this was a murder trial in which he, the defendant, is accused of killing his wife and disposing of her body like a piece of garbage in the mud under a bridge. Oh yes. It was ‘all eyes on GBC’ time. This was his moment to shine. You could tell he’d been waiting for this moment since 2012 when this drama first unfolded; when the shock of what had taken place reverberated around Brisbane. Make no mistake. Those of us that were there could see that he is loving it up there. He loves every moment of this, in the sick, twisted way narcissistic sociopaths (NS) do. It’s a chance to mess with 15 minds and bring them around to his way of thinking. But, as with most NS’s, he doesn’t realise that his apparent sincerity no longer holds water. The lies have unfolded in court before the jury and our own very eyes and ears. Where before no one knew of his lies (and even once caught out he told more lies to smooth over the situation) now EVERYONE knows. Especially the jury. The people tasked with either condemning him or setting him free.
The day started off very unsettled. That’s the best word I can use to describe the atmosphere… the questions were flying thick and fast among the regular trial-watchers:
“Will he take the stand?”
“If he takes the stand, what is he going to say?”
“Surely he’s defence team wouldn’t allow him up there after all the lies he’s told? He’s been completely discredited!!”
“There’s no way he’ll take the stand. He might be arrogant but he’s not an idiot” (He’s not?!?!)
And the responses were equally mixed:
“I think he’ll get up there… he’s that arrogant. His narcissicism won’t let him to NOT get up there”
“He’s going to get up there and confess for sure”
“He’ll get up there and blame it all away on the depression, or say there was a fight and she stormed out or something”
“He’ll get up there but swear he didn’t do it. He’ll be a martyr – he’ll go down a martyr. Falsely accused until the very end”
“He won’t get up there. No chance. He probably realises how bad this all looks”
Long lines of people stretched from the door of Courtroom 17 out into the foyer. Even just the chance of GBC taking the stand OR the summary arguments taking place were enough to draw people from far and wide. So many, in fact, that the bailiff had to stop letting people in because the room was overcrowded. The tension in the air was palpable… when Michael Byrne stood up to address the court, you could have heard a pin drop. Despite the admonition from the bailiff about not showing emotion and avoiding audible comments, there was a collective shocked gasp when we were informed GBC would take the stand in his own defence AND call witnesses. I personally couldn’t believe it… I can’t even remember the last time a defendant in a high profile murder case in Australia took the stand in his/her own defence but I think I knew deep down he couldn’t help himself. In his mind, I’m sure he believes he can sway us all. Physical evidence be damned! He will explain it away.
I think the reason it’s taken me 3 days to write this blog is because I’ve been feeling really angry and inexplicably emotional. Him being on the stand has far-reaching ramifications but by far the worst one, in my eyes, is that once again he will be dragging Allison’s name through the mud. It’s like he’s dumping her at Kholo Creek all over again. Michael Byrne gave a 2 hour summary of what GBC would tell the court and with each passing point, I got angrier and angrier.
“Gerard will say he did not kill his wife. He will tell you he did not leave his children alone in the house. That he did not carry or transport his wife’s body to Kholo Creek and place it in the mud. That he did not then drive back to his house. He will tell you he did not do a clean-up of the house because there was nothing to clean up.”
Really? REALLY?!!! This is what he’s going with? Outright denial? If not him, then WHO?
I won’t go into gross amounts of details as to what he’s going to discuss but I will hit the highlights. We were informed that Gerard would discuss:
- His infidelities
- Toni McHugh and the emails
- What happened on the night of the 18th – the drive to Mt Cootha whilst GBC’s parents babysat to do their 15 minute exercise discussion
- That there was never any shouting or an explosion but there was stress … that his relationship with Allison was one in which there were never any histrionics or domestic violence (I could feel my breakfast coming back up my throat at this point… no domestic violence? What do you call killing your wife?)
- That when the affair was discovered in 2011, her only reaction was one of disbelief where she got out of the car, sat on the curb, he got out and sat next to her and they discussed it and worked through it. She told him he had a choice to make and if that choice was her, Toni had to be fired, he could no longer see or speak to her and there would be ‘conditions’ (if this was me, the only condition would be that he had to stand still while I ran him over with my car)
- The fact that the affair was not forgotten and was still a sore topic around the 19th April whereby a normal day ensued. Apparently Allison had some follow-up questions to the 15 minute session the night before and when GBC went to bed, she was in her red checked pajamas on the couch, watching the Footy Show.
I need to interject here to say that the prosecution at this stage was writing as if their lives depended on it and I had a serious case of heartburn… it honestly stirred my stomach acid to new heights in my throat. I immediately (and urgently!) dug through my bag for one of the 4 rolls of QuickEze…I want to comment on what the judge was doing but fear that I can’t until the trial is over… L
- We were told the defence would call a forensic psychiatrist to discuss the link between depression and self-harm and a forensic toxicologist to talk about serotonin syndrome (I don’t know how much these people are being paid or how they could sleep at night. I wonder if the defence had to go ‘expert witness’ shopping as well?)
This is a summary of what serotonin syndrome is – see if you can pick out where this ‘theory’ is going to fall down for them. Obviously there is a lot more information available on the topic but this overview gives a good umbrella understanding.
“Serotonin syndrome is a toxic state caused mainly by excess serotonin within the central nervous system. It results in a variety of mental, autonomic and neuromuscular changes, which can range in severity from mild to life-threatening. Most cases are self-limiting. Severe serotonin syndrome is nearly always caused by a drug interaction involving two or more ‘serotonergic’ drugs, at least one of which is usually a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor or monoamine oxidase inhibitor. Management involves withdrawal of the offending drugs, aggressive supportive care and occasionally serotonin antagonists such as cyproheptadine. Treatment of the condition for which the serotonergic drugs were prescribed should be reviewed.” (sourced from http://www.australianprescriber.com/magazine/26/3/62/3)
All I could think at this point was ‘surely they’re not going to go back to the suicide angle… surely not!’ …And yet they are. I don’t understand why they continue to push this. I don’t understand how Allison’s parents could not know she had depression and yet she felt comfortable going to EBC about it. I don’t understand how the defence and GBC can continue to flog a dead horse. This theory has been disproven. Unless they’re planning to argue that she took a huge overdose of her SSRI drug (the Zoloft) then walked 14km and lay down on the muddy bank of Kholo Creek to die. Or that she got so sick that she lay down… to die. And in the meantime she scratched her husband’s face in his sleep, placed her own blood and hair in the car, rolled her head in the leaves out on the back deck, put on an invisibility cloak for the 14km walk (because no one – at all – remembers seeing her)… and did all this all just to implicate and frame her husband for her death? For those who are saying it’s a little far-fetched that he killed her then dressed her in walking clothes, don’t you think the above scenario is just SLIGHTLY more far-fetched?
What upsets me is that anyone who has suffered from long term depression (which I have personally and still do and I’ve also watched relatives and friends struggle) knows that THE FIRST THING any doctor or psychiatrist tells you is that you are not defined by your illness. But in death, that’s what they’re trying to do to Allison. They’re trying to paint her as a depressed person who couldn’t function normally and yes, there are days when you can’t get out of bed and you can’t cope with small things but with medication and a stable family/friend support network, you can still conquer the world. She was more than just a depressed person. And that’s why my heart aches reading her journal or hearing them slander her in open court.
Michael continued will also discuss:
- The fact that Allison’s depression and weight gain meant they were no longer physical as she now had a decreased libido as a result of the medication
- Apparently, Allison desperately wanted to give him another child – a son and he said no. She became more depressed so he had an affair with Michelle Hammond. (That’s the next logical step, right? The whole ‘in sickness and in health’ thing obviously wasn’t quite as well understood as it probably should have been when he took his marriage vows.)
- He felt bad, got out of affair and agreed to have another baby but it was a girl
- GBC wanted to start several agencies and Allison was improving, throwing all her energies into the kids, which meant she was often tired (I don’t blame her! I would be too)
- GBC began counselling some of the new staff on their personal problems and one of these people was Toni McHugh.
- In light of this ‘counselling’, he developed a physical relationship with TMH because he was flattered by the attention and liked being acknowledged (OK, I’ll say what everyone else is thinking…. WHAT THE ACTUAL F**K?? He’s painting himself out to be the ‘chased’ party and not the aggressor… he was flattered so instead of being a good husband, he porks the hired help at work? This guy is really something else. He can explain away anything and come out smelling like roses)
- Apparently TMH became more demanding and wanted him to leave Allison, which he wouldn’t and told her so… in his mind, the relationship was a physical one and it went on for more than 3 years (By now, I was searching the ceiling for any hooks or ceiling fans I could hang myself from to get out of listening to this extraordinary bullsh*t)
- Next came the crash… February 2011… the floods. Business was bad, money was non-existent, business partner problems etc. Loans from friends… we all know the story from here.
- Next came discovery of the affair by Allison. The very same day she confronted GBC with her knowledge, he went to Toni’s and broke up with her and she ‘lost it’… she accused him of using her for 3 years – (Well……ummm….. yeah. What did she think was happening? The greatest love story ever told? They were screwing in the back of Snowy. Disney is hardly going to make a movie about it!! Though that is a little unfair. Anyone that has had a personal encounter with someone of his level of NS behaviour knows how convincing they can be. I have no doubt he was telling her he loved her and she bought the whole cow (his lies) whilst giving the milk for free)
- Around Christmas 2011, GBC wanted to meet with Toni to ‘apologise’ and from here they continued to have phone, email and ‘private parts’ contact (-shudder-)
- Allison’s provisions for re-establishing their relationship were that he had to give her his password for his phone and she was allowed to check for calls and messages/emails, plus he had to attend counselling sessions and avoid contact with TMH (Not enough in my opinion… he should have had to sit on the driveway whilst she piled his clothes and belongings up around him and then lit them on fire)
At this point we broke for lunch and I’m not afraid to say this… I was exhausted. Mentally, physically, emotionally. Just completely drained. Over lunch, I debated with one half of ‘interestedduo’ over how he was going to explain away the TMH emails… our conclusion was that he would say he was just lying to her to keep her happy. But otherwise, there WAS no explanation… because to say he really was going to be free to come to her by July 01 meant that there was reason to believe he killed ABC, but it was also reason to believe he had lied even further to police by indicating their relationship was no longer ongoing.
Back after lunch and Michael Byrne resumed his tale of GBC’s woes… first cab off the rank? The emails to TMH:
- He discussed with Toni options for her to go overseas and teach, to Dubai etc (how convenient for HIM) but apparently she was obsessed and only wanted to be with him (the great and wonderous GBC – vomit-) so when she put the hard word on him for a date that she would be free from Allison, he told her July 01 to APPEASE her with no plans to follow through (!!!! Oh… my… eff-ing…God!!!! The level of narcissism is off the charts. Honestly, have you ever heard a bigger load of horseshit? Let’s be honest… he was doing what he did best. He was bored and he was playing with other people’s lives, testing the boundaries, seeing what he could get away with. I’d love to be making this up but the fact is, that is what these people do. It’s horrifying and I have a whole new level of sympathy for TMH now)
THEN… FINALLY…. We move to the night of the 19th:
- Both parents say goodnight to the kids, as per their normal routine
- That when he got home earlier, he had handed Allison his phone (F**k… I could see straight away where this was going… I hope everyone else can too…)
- That when he went to bed at about 10pm, ALLISON had his phone, making him unable to be the one who placed it on the charger at 1:48 (if we don’t have smart people on that jury, we’re up you-know-what creek without a paddle)
- The next morning he got up and Allison wasn’t there so he assumed she was walking (and not lying dead on a riverbank?), he was rushing, he cut himself shaving, he dabbed at the blood with tissues then flushed them down the toilet (hence no blood evidence to prove or disprove…. Jeebers….)
- Sarah asked him what was wrong and he asked her to ‘Help Daddy put on a band-aid’ (even his daughter becomes his alibi… I’m pretty sure I was incensed with rage here… I really wished I was in the main courtroom to see how they jurors were taking this whole tale because the people in the overflow courtroom were certainly up-in-arms… but quietly, via notetaking and knowing glances, so we didn’t get kicked out of the courtroom.
And we all know his story from here… or should I say we know 167 different versions of his story from here.
Then Michael Byrne closed his summary with something that floored me and I’m sure others felt the same; that as of the 19th, GBC was feeling no particular pressure or stress (WTAF????) and that apart from a small worry about the finances, for which there was no short term solution (really? Not even $900K life insurance?) he had no worries, there was no fights, no physical alterations…. Nothing that evening at all.
I’d really like people to sound off their opinions in the comments section about this because I want to know if it affects you as much as it affected me.
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking over the last few days as to why this case has become so ingrained in my life and indeed, in all of our lives here at Aussie Criminals and in the wider public. In the lives of the people who turn up to watch the trial every day.
I think for me it’s because I identify with her so clearly, as a woman, as someone who suffers badly from depression, as someone driven to perfection, as someone who has had a narcissistic partner or close friend dedicated to destroying me and indeed, all those around them. Why do you all identify with Allison? Please let everyone reading this know by posting in the comments section. For me, she’s not here to be able to fight anymore but we can on her behalf. And like I said recently, with those fingernail scratches, she quite literally branded him a liar. She was fighting until the end. She would never have willingly left those children or her family so she did whatever she could to let the police know that. I firmly believe she knew what was going to happen and took measures to leave evidence.
With Michael Byrne’s closing of his summary, GBC took the stand.
And for 2 hours, we were subjected to the most inane drivel with interim crocodile tears that I’ve ever had the displeasure of sitting through. It’s not just because I dislike the man with every fibre of my being and have never held any doubt about his guilt (only doubt that the jury may somehow find reasonable doubt in there somewhere)… but he just talked utter shite for that length of time and we were only up to 2003 when court recessed for the day. So the reality of the court-watchers is that we have another 9 years of perfect recollection, such as what they ate in Switzerland on a crystal clear Monday morning… and yet he can’t recall whether or not Allison came to bed that night?
I’m going to suggest the bailiff provides us all with buckets on Monday for the sure-fire moments of projectile vomiting that will undoubtedly occur. He clearly hasn’t been throwing up lately. Prison food must be pretty good because he’s definitely filled out. I wonder if he’s doing any motivational speaking in jail? Maybe if he counsels some of his fellow prisoners on their ‘personal problems’ he can strike up another physical relationship. Ew.
The moment the tears started was a ripper. He kind of had to work up to it. I swear he’d even been practising the way his voice broke. At the flick of a switch, he transitioned from tears to light-hearted stories…
“(sob, sniffle, sob, voice break) … I fell in love with her… I had an emotional connection to her… (sob, sniffle, tears)… we were planning to spend the rest of our lives together … (sniffle… switch flick – normal voice)… so anyway, we were travelling around Switzerland and I was being totally awesome and Allison was being totally shit…”
Even now, he has to come out on top. He has to be the victor. He has to be the best. And I have no doubt, he thinks he’s the smartest person in the room. I suspect the only person who thought his testimony went well was… himself.
‘Til next time, #justiceforAllison