Wheelchair-bound man denies murder charge
A WHEELCHAIR-bound man has denied murdering his partner and carer, who was stabbed to death in a Cape York home after allegedly calling him a "cripple".
Elroy James Raymond, 30, pleaded not guilty in the Cairns Supreme Court to murder.
Cecilia Nicholas, 35, died from a single stab wound to the chest on November 18, 2017 at Kowanyama.
Defence barrister James Sheridan said Mr Raymond had been "confined to a wheelchair at the time of this incident".
"It was a case that his partner was his carer at the time and it was the use of a relatively small knife, one stab to the chest," Mr Sheridan told the court.
"There are a number of surrounding witnesses that hear some raised voices.
"There may be an issue that the defence would like to explore in terms of that psychiatric evidence."
Mr Sheridan told the court that a comment had allegedly been said to Mr Raymond by Ms Nicholas shortly before her death.
He said that Mr Raymond's legal team were attempting to engage a psychiatrist but there have been some delays due to money.
"So you're talking about expertise… significance of some cultural slight or are you talking about expertise in the sense of… insanity?" Justice James Henry asked.
Mr Sheridan said "yes, potentially both".
"There are comments that were apparently made where one of the witnesses indicated that a comment was made that it's alleged that he said 'I'm sick and tired about being called a cripple c***'," Mr Sheridan said.
The court heard Mr Raymond was, until recently, an inmate at the Capricornia Correctional Centre near Rockhampton for safety reasons. He was unable to stay at Lotus Glen because relatives of Ms Nicholas were there.
Last month Mr Raymond was transferred to Townsville Correctional Centre but wanted to return to Rockhampton because Ms Nicholas had relatives there as well.
Mr Sheridan said that Mr Raymond's legal team had obtained a criminal report in mid-December last year and "running parallel with that is negotiations with prosecutions that didn't come to pass".
The trial is expected to take three to four days.
The court heard a record of interview and a covert tape recording, made while Mr Raymond was remanded in custody, may be played during the trial.
The case was adjourned to later this month for mention but the trial has been listed for late March.