Elise Walker denied bail on murder charge, court not willing to take 'leap of faith'

Elise Walker

Elise Walker

A KANGAROO Flat woman accused of murdering her boyfriend by stabbing him in the chest on Christmas Eve last year, has been denied bail in court.

Elise Walker, 34, appeared in the Bendigo Magistrates’ Court on Monday to hear whether her bid for bail had been successful.

Walker is charged with murdering her then-boyfriend Matthew Johnston.

Defence counsel Scott Johns had earlier argued that Walker should be granted bail, saying that she had accommodation in Kennington, had engaged with drug and alcohol counselling and had some prospects of success at trial.

She has been in custody for eight months.

Walker’s mother Jacqueline Stallinga gave evidence last week in support of her daughter’s bail attempt, in which she spoke about the drug use present in the Pauline Court house where the alleged murder occurred.

She told the court her daughter was a drug user, but not a drug trafficker.

Ms Stallinga also spoke about the physical abuse experienced by Walker at the hands of Mr Johnston.

She said she was confident she could monitor Walker and would notify police if she did not adhere to bail conditions.

Magistrate Bruce Cottrill said Ms Stallinga had “turned a blind eye to the seriousness of the home environment”.

“It is not clear to me that Ms Stallinga is able to… monitor and manage the accused,” he said.

“I have a sense that Ms Stalling has minimised her daughter’s activities.”

Mr Cottrill said it was common for family separations to occur when a person went into custody, and Walker’s situation could not be described as “exceptional”.

“It would require the court to take a leap of faith,” he said.

Bail was denied.

Walker was last week committed to stand trial for murder. She is likely to appear in the Supreme Court in Melbourne early next year.

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