Gruesome scenes inside couple's home
POLICE officers have described to a Supreme Court jury the gruesome scene they encountered when conducting a check at an Ipswich address in 2010.
The officers were giving evidence yesterday in the murder trial of Ian Robert Hunter, accused of killing his wife Vicki.
Senior Constable David Thiel said he and another officer arrived at a Sonter St, Raceview, residence just before 7am on May 7, 2010, after two anonymous 000 calls were made from inside the house.
The officers told the court they found Ian Robert Hunter sprawled out, face-down on the loungeroom floor and moaning.
After checking the bedrooms of the two-level home, Snr Const Thiel walked down the back steps towards the garage and spotted footsteps across the backyard.
"As I went down the stairs I could smell a strong odour ... as I got down the bottom of the stairs I could smell it was petrol," he told the court.
"As I was going down the stairs I could see there was a set of footprints.
"The back grass area looked like it had been top-soiled recently ... there were foot prints in the soil.
"There looked like a light drag mark."
Snr Const Thiel said his attention was drawn to a lifeless "female curled up on the ground".
"... and there was a pool of blood on the ground," he said.
"I observed there was a steel bar ... about 40 cm in length and blood on it also.
"I saw a petrol can with its funnel extended and turned on its side."
The body was 55-year-old Vicki, Hunter's wife of 37 years.
Another police officer arrived at the house not long after Snr Const Thiel's discovery.
He told the court there appeared to have been an attempt to wipe up the blood around Mrs Hunter's body.
The officer said he followed the footprints across the backyard to the Hunter's back fence, where he found a lady's wristwatch.
Earlier in the trial, the jury heard the watch was Mrs Hunter's.
Photos of the grisly murder scene were shown to the jury as Mrs Hunter's family sat in the public gallery.
A police audio recording of Hunter being loaded into an ambulance van and at the hospital revealed he claimed he had been hit on the head.
Hunter has pleaded not guilty to the murder of his wife and maintained an intruder was responsible.