Man accused of killing ex-partner says he ‘blacked out’
The TWEED Heads man accused of fatally stabbing his ex-partner "blacked out" during the alleged attack, a court has heard.
Paul Thomas Ryan, 66, is before a judge only trial for the murder of 63-year-old Marie Van Beers, at the Lismore Supreme Court.
The pair, who had been together for 37-years, had separated about two years before Ms Van Beers' death but continued to live together, the court heard.
Mr Ryan has pleaded not guilty to the murder charge but pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
The Crown Prosecution has ultimately rejected his manslaughter plea.
Mr Ryan is accused of fatally stabbing Ms Van Beers in their Brett St unit, Tweed Heads, on November 12, 2018.
During a police interview, which was played before court on Wednesday, Mr Ryan said he "blacked out" and appeared to be confused when told Ms Van Beers had died.
Mr Ryan told police Ms Van Beers had planned on moving to be with her new partner.
"After 37 years (of being together), your wife turns around and says she's having an affair," he said in the video.
"(I don't know how she could be so) cold hearted and just turn on me like that.
"She'd always throw it up in my face, (saying) 'he's a better man than you'll ever be, he's a lot smarter'."
Mr Ryan said when he returned home after appearing in Tweed Local Court that day, where Ms Van Beers had successfully taken out an apprehended violence order against him, he "lost the plot".
"I don't know what I was doing," he said.
"I got into the kitchen, she started over and over again onto the same old thing like a broken record
"She just wouldn't ease it up.
"She was cutting up fruit, she dropped a knife and I picked a knife up and I just lost it, she fell to the floor.
"I pushed her off the chair and as I said she dropped her knife and I went to pick it up, I don't know … I had a blackout."
Mr Ryan also told the police he'd told Ms Van Beers moments before the alleged incident they could "leave it all behind" them and not "worry about the affair".
He said he had told her "everything can be forgotten" and "everything will be all right, just stay here with me."
The court heard Ms Van Beers had planned to leave the next day to be with her new partner.
The trial will continue Wednesday in the Lismore Supreme Court.
•For 24-hour domestic violence support call the national hotline 1800 RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.