Accused claims ’blackout’ during alleged attempted murder
THE jury in an attempted murder trial is expected to deliberate today to consider a verdict.
Daniel John Shields, 49, is on trial in the Supreme Court at Rockhampton after pleading not guilty to attempted murder, and not guilty to an alternative charge of malicious act with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, over an incident involving Raymond Jarvis in Gracemere in February last year.
The prosecution has alleged Mr Shields used a machete in an upwards swing motion to wound Mr Jarvis under his right armpit and hit Mr Jarvis's head when he came up from behind him.
Yesterday, crown prosecutor Joshua Phillips continued his cross examination of Mr Shields.
Mr Shields told the court Mr Jarvis had thrusted a piece of timber "ferociously" at him during the alleged incident.
Mr Shields claimed the timber had hit his face and "chipped" a tooth.
"Part of a tooth was damaged and fell out," he said.
However, he said there was no bleeding, damage to the lip or damage to the mouth.
Mr Phillips suggested in cross examination at no point in time was Mr Shields allegedly struck breaking a tooth.
"You are making it up to bolster the case of self defence," he said.
Mr Shields disagreed with Mr Phillips' suggestion.
Towards the end of the alleged incident, Mr Shields claimed he had "blacked out for a second or two".
He claimed before "blacking out" he remembered getting out his car with the machete and pushing Mr Jarvis back towards the house saying, "F--- off c---".
He said he remembered both he and Mr Jarvis were swearing and allegedly "swinging" at each other and continuing into Mr Jarvis' yard.
He said his next memory was he and Mr Jarvis on the ground, with Mr Shields on top of him.
"I closed my eyes like a blackout and remember being on the ground close to his house laying on his back," he said.
"Just sudden loss of memory, everything went black for a second and that was it.
"There was just a short gap in my memory.
"I realised I was on the ground on top of Mr Jarvis when I opened up my eyes."
Mr Phillips suggested in cross examination the "blackout" was an attempt at covering up the most important part of the narrative where Mr Jarvis ended up with a life-threatening injury and a knock to the back of the head.
"You are lying about what happened at Thora St that evening," Mr Phillips said.
"The truth of the matter is you went there full of steam because Allison Whyte had just confessed she had cheated once again.
"That motivated you to go around there with one intention and that was to kill Mr Jarvis because of the pain he had caused your life."
Mr Shields disagreed with Mr Phillips' suggestion but did accept Ms Whyte had confessed to cheating on him with Mr Jarvis before the alleged incident.
Mr Phillips continued, suggesting Ms Whyte's confession motivated Mr Shields to take Mr Jarvis' life.
"You did that through anger," he said.
"You struck him in a cowardly fashion from behind and then you pursued him with a machete giving him a life threatening injury all because you were trying to kill him, motivated by what had occurred by Allison Whyte and him and how that affected you.
"The only reason you gave up finishing him off was a combination of the presence of Mr Jarvis' son and your own injury to your arm."
Mr Shields continued to disagree with Mr Phillips' suggestion and claimed Mr Jarvis' son was not present.
Mr Shields' barrister Scott Moon told the jury during his closing address they had to ask themselves when his client attended Mr Jarvis' address on Thora St, Gracemere, on February 6, 2019, what his intent was.
"For the offence of attempted murder an essential element is an intent to kill," Mr Moon said.
"You need to look carefully at what Mr Shields' purpose was at the time; whether he had an intention to kill."
He told the jury they should assess the credit and reliability of the witnesses, particularly Mr Jarvis' evidence.
Mr Moon said there were a number of inconsistencies in Mr Jarvis' evidence.
He said there was an inconsistency put to Mr Jarvis in relation to whether his son had come out when Mr Jarvis was present, which resulted in "quite an emotional response".
He said Mr Jarvis accepted what he had told police was wrong about his son coming out afterwards and maintained his son was present.
He said Mr Jarvis gave evidence Mr Shields alleged he dealt drugs to kids.
He said in cross examination Mr Jarvis accepted he didn't tell police that and had heard yelling and couldn't make out what was said.
He said Mr Jarvis had also told police he had his left hand on the machete when he was on the ground.
He said in cross examination Mr Jarvis said he might have said it then but all he remembered was laying down on top of the machete and he didn't get off it until Mr Shields had left.
He said Mr Jarvis had given some evidence of threats made by Mr Shields, which included Mr Shields allegedly telling Mr Jarvis he was going to kill him because he had ruined his life.
He said he put it to Mr Jarvis in cross examination that between the time he heard Mr Shields yelling out the words about him allegedly dealing drugs to school kids and the time he was on top of him on the ground, that he didn't in fact recall Mr Shields saying anything to him.
He said Mr Jarvis responded, "No, he mightn't have".
The court heard Mr Shields claimed he initially attended Mr Jarvis' address to have Alisson Whyte's property collected.
Mr Moon said once there Mr Shields was confronted by a "threatening" and "aggressive" Mr Jarvis, who had allegedly armed himself with a large piece of timber and had commenced an assault on Mr Shields.
He told the jury if they accepted the evidence of Mr Shields they might believe he thought he was at risk of suffering serious harm at the hands of Mr Jarvis.
"He thought his head was going to be caved in," he said.
"You might think Mr Shields response to that was reasonable in the circumstances."
He said Mr Shields did not intend to kill Mr Jarvis or cause grievous bodily harm to him.
He told the jury if they accepted Mr Shields' evidence, they could accept he was acting in self defence.
"If you accept the evidence of Mr Shields, then you may accept based on those circumstances he was acting lawfully and in self defence," he said.
"If you accept Mr Shields' explanation, then you would accept he had no intention to kill and would find him not guilty of attempted murder.
"You would also find he was not acting with intention to cause grievous bodily harm and was just defending himself from this ferocious attack."
The closing addresses at the trial continue today.