Mother weeps giving evidence

Last updated 13:52 04/03/2014
Glen
MURDER TRIAL: Featherston's Glen Jones was 40 when he died.

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The mother of a disabled Featherston man who was beaten to death has broken down giving evidence about arriving at his flat and seeing all the blood.

"I could not believe it," Suzanne Jones told a jury in the High Court at Wellington today.

Her words were barely audible while she tried to wipe her eyes.

Her son Glen Jones, 40, died in hospital from head injuries a few hours after the attack in the early hours of January 12 last year.

Mrs Jones said Glen Jones had lived in a former motel unit, one of a block his sister and brother-in-law bought a few years before.

She was rung during the night to say there was trouble at the motels, the police were there and Glen might be involved.

Mrs Jones said she told her husband she would see what had happened. Police stopped her and said Glen had been hurt and she could not go in.

A little later she was taken to the door and saw the blood and ambulance staff around him.

Mrs Jones' distress meant the court's morning session ended a few minutes early. She is due to continue giving evidence after lunch.

While she is in court screens have been put in front of the dock where the four people accused of murdering her son are seated.

Justice Alan MacKenzie told the jury it was not to be taken as adverse to the defendants and the screens were usual and just intended to make it easier to give distressing evidence.

Mrs Jones had earlier told the jury that Glen, the third-born of her four children, had a brain tumour as a toddler and was not expected to live past about five years.

He had an operation and radiation treatment but he was left with poor balance, his right side was weak, he could see only shadows using his right eye, he had learning difficulties and epilepsy.

But he had a drivers licence and had worked at the local supermarket for about 15 years.

Mrs Jones said the job was a "God-send". He used a forklift to unload stock, and he would stack vegetables.

A few months before he died he started a relationship and for a few weeks moved in with a woman whose name is suppressed. That ended though when she saw a woman he worked with hugging him.

The court has been told that the woman he had briefly lived with had made a rape allegation against him but they had also been seen cuddling after that.

The Crown alleges the attack on Mr Jones was a vigilante strike after a group of friends talked about what they had heard of the woman's rape claim.

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Earlier today a pathologist said Mr Jones died from head injuries.

Dr Katherine White spoke about the many injuries she saw,  some contained "tramlines", parallel lines from a straight object or objects.

In court she was shown two wooden objects. Both were of the type that could cause tramlines but she thought they looked the wrong size to have caused some of the marks she saw.

The Crown alleges the weapons were taken into Mr Jones' small flat and used in the attack.

Tariana Hineteanaurangi Jones, 33, Kristofer Lee Jones, 24, Matthew John McKinney, 29, and Hayden Ranson, 28, have pleaded not guilty of murder.

McKinney and Ranson have pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary but Tariana Jones and Kristofer Jones pleaded not guilty.

Toni Maree Miller, 23, is charged with aggravated burglary alone and pleaded not guilty. She is alleged to have driven some of the others from Masterton to Featherston on the night of the attack.

- The Dominion Post

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