Verdict brings no closure: mother
IT IS impossible for Colleen Whiffen to explain the nightmare she has lived since her daughter Nicole Lieske was killed four years ago.
She cried on her son's shoulder outside Rockhampton Supreme Court last night after Steven Roy Turner was found guilty of Nicole's murder.
Ms Whiffen saved up and flew from New South Wales to Rockhampton for the trial this month.
She said nothing could heal the pain she felt from losing her “Nikki”, not even having the murderer locked away.
“There won't be closure for me, ever,” Ms Whiffen said wiping her red eyes.
Turner, 34, barely reacted when a jury found him guilty of the February 2005 murder.
He had already pleaded guilty to dumping Ms Lieske's body at The Caves but denied during the trial that he killed her.
Ms Whiffen said all she had left of her daughter were happy memories.
“She'd light up a room just by walking into it.”
Ms Whiffen said Turner painted Nicole as nothing but a drug user.
While she never agreed with her daughter's developing drug addiction, Ms Whiffen said Nicole was always a loving mother and daughter.
She said Nicole never neglected her children, who are now aged 16, 10 and seven.
“She used to call me up and say, 'People stop me in the street and tell me how beautiful my son is'. 'My boy,' she used to say. 'My boy'.”
Nicole's brother Troy, 32, said he remembered gold panning with his sister when they were young.
Ms Whiffen said she wanted to send a message to the Government that murder was never okay and needed harsher penalties.
The jury found Turner guilty of tying Nicole's arms with zip ties and gagging her mouth.
The killer defended himself on trial, saying he was having bondage sex with Nicole and left her tied up in his home.
Ms Whiffen said her daughter would never have consented to being tied up because she was a very modest woman.
Turner claimed when he returned to his house Nicole was dead so he dumped her body.
Three months later her skeleton was found so decomposed that forensic tests couldn't determine how she died.
Turner told police after finding Ms Lieske dead he glued her eyes closed and to test if she was alive he lit lighter fluid in her navel.
On trial Turner said he lied to police.
Justice Duncan McMeekin will sentence Turner later.
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