Crown witness alleges son confided in his mother
A crown witness alleges Patricia Samson was aware her son had killed his partner as they drove out of Invercargill towards a park in 2019.
Patricia Elizabeth Samson, 53, has pleaded not guilty to attempting to defeat the course of justice at Invercargill on November 17, 2019 and is on trial before a jury in the High Court.
She is accused of discarding a knife and other items which could have been evidence against Samuel, who was later found guilty of the murder of Azalia Wilson at an Invercargill motel on November 17, 2019.
On Tuesday, Crown witness Jemma Colvin, who is a colleague and a friend of Patricia’s daughter, gave evidence that she was with Patricia and two other associates talking at a dining room table, the day after Wilson’s body was found.
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They had been discussing a news article where police had appealed for information about suspicious activity near Fosbender Park.
Colvin recalled that Patricia had said it was her they were talking about because she had gone out there with her son.
Crown prosecutor Riki Donnelly pressed Colvin if anything else had been discussed, and she replied: She (Patricia) had gone out with him and got rid of some stuff or something.
Colvin further gave evidence that days later Patricia said she had got a call to go to the motel and on the drive out to Fosbender Park, Samuel told her he had taken Wilson’s life.
Under cross-examination, Slater asked how good Colvin's recollection was.
"Not very good, it's all a blur," Colvin said.
Slater also put it to Colvin, that his client had never said that her son had told her he had killed Wilson.
Colvin: I don't know, it's just confusing.
Slater: What's confusing?
Colvin: Trying to remember everything.
Slater asked if when Colvin spoke to police last week, was it emphasised that she must remember to say "certain things", one being what Patricia said.
Colvin said yes.
Slater: Do you feel under pressure today to say that?
Colvin: A bit.
Crown witness Raylene Lee, a work colleague of Patricia’s, told the court Patricia had said to her “I can’t keep protecting my children”.
Lee told the court Patricia thought the police would be coming for her because she had picked up Samuel from the motel room, and they took some stuff out to Sandy Point and dumped it.
The Crown alleges Patricia knew her son had killed Wilson, or that Wilson was in the process of dying, and that there would be an investigation when she went and picked him up from the motel.
Defence lawyer David Slater, in his opening address on Monday, said the centre of the trial was "did Patricia Samson dispose of items into the Oreti River?”
Samuel was sentenced to life in prison in June, with a minimum of 17 years.
The trial is expected to continue on Wednesday.