Stolen wallet links to baton

A WALLET and identification cards belonging to the stepfather of baby Zayden Veal-Whitting were found in a car at the home of the man accused of the child’s murder, the Supreme Court has heard.

The wallet, containing a membership card belonging to Mathew Tisell, was found by police in a green shopping bag, along with his driver’s licence, another membership card, an X-box and a baton, alleged by the Crown to be the murder weapon.

Harley Hicks, 21, of Long Gully has pleaded not guilty to murder, aggravated burglary and theft.

The Crown has alleged Zayden was struck at least 25 times to the head and killed with a home-made baton during a burglary at his Long Gully home over night on June 14/15, 2012.

Homicide squad Detective Leading Senior Constable Robert Catania told the court he attended Hicks’ home on June 20, 2012, to look for property reported stolen from Zayden’s Eaglehawk Road home. He was looking for sunglasses, a wallet and scales.

When the wallet was found in a bag in a car in the driveway, the search ceased and the property was declared a crime scene.

Crime scene investigator Leading Senior Constable Scott Ellis told the court he attended the Green Street property on the evening of June 20 and whilst examining the scene where the wallet was found, noticed other items in the shopping bag.

He said he removed an "improvised baton-type device’’ featuring lengths of copper wire, and wrapped in electrical tape, from the bag.

Leading Senior Constable Ellis said he had not been told a weapon was involved in the death of the child, but because he found two other cards carrying Mr Tisell’s name in the same bag, he thought the baton could be relevant to the investigation.

Crime scene examiner Leading Senior Constable Scott Harris earlier told the court he took samples from anything that could become evidence from the property where Zayden was killed, including blood-stained bedding from the baby’s cot, samples or measurements from the side and head rails, a baby monitor, botanical material such as grass or other dried matter found scattered throughout the baby’s bed and from shoe impressions and scuff marks outside the property.

Leading Senior Constable Harris also told the court a member of the dog squad removed a dog from the laundry at the house.

The trial continues.


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