Man faces court over pub death

THE man accused of killing a Brisbane man in a Gatton bar fight at the weekend will appear in an Ipswich court next month.

Christopher James Earel appeared in Toowoomba Magistrates Court yesterday, where he was formally charged with the murder of Laurence Shane Black.

Earel, a 26-year-old Bribie Island man, stood calmly in front of magistrate Bruce Schemioneck and made no comment during proceedings.

Police allege Black died after he was struck by a blow from Earel during a bar fight at the Imperial Hotel in Gatton on Friday night.

Prosecutor Sergeant Tony Costa asked Mr Schmioneck to transfer the case to the Ipswich Magistrates Court, with Gatton matters falling under Ipswich jurisdiction.

Earel was not required to enter a plea and his solicitor Neil Lawler asked that the matter be adjourned for committal mention.

As a magistrate does not have the jurisdiction to grant bail on a murder charge, no application for bail was made and Earel was remanded in custody.

While Earel's case will appear at the Ipswich Magistrates Court on December 21, he will be excused from appearing.

Plain clothes detectives attended the Imperial Hotel on Saturday to examine evidence from CCTV footage, interview witnesses and examine scientific data in their investigations.

Police said on Sunday there were no weapons involved in the incident, but they could not confirm the cause of death.

The Imperial Hotel remained closed over the weekend following the incident.



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