Ethan Macpherson (left) and Kynan Vital are charged with murder.
Ethan Macpherson (left) and Kynan Vital are charged with murder.

Witnesses to be called for committal over father’s death

FIFTEEN witnesses are set to give evidence in a committal hearing in the case of Ethan Macpherson, who is charged with the murder of Springfield Lakes father David Murphy.

Mr Murphy died on his 49th birthday after being struck on the head with what police allege to have been a gun wielded by Macpherson in a roadside confrontation.

Ethan Macpherson, now aged 20, appeared in the dock of Ipswich Magistrates Court on Tuesday charged with the murder of David Murphy on October 19, 2019.

Kynan Ignacio Vital, 20, is also charged with murder and attended the 90-minute application hearing with his family after being granted Supreme Court bail in April last year.

Springfield man David Murphy, pictured with daughter Julia. Mr Murphy was allegedly murdered in 2019. Picture supplied by Family
Springfield man David Murphy, pictured with daughter Julia. Mr Murphy was allegedly murdered in 2019. Picture supplied by Family

Vital is a former boyfriend of Mr Murphy’s daughter Julia Murphy, who will be called for cross-examination at the committal.

Angus Edwards, barrister for Vital, and Rob Carroll, the barrister for Macpherson, both made applications to the court to cross examine some witnesses, and for approval to be given to allow for certain questions to assist their cases.

A committal date for the hearing was also sought.

During the proceedings Macpherson sat silently in the dock with his arms folded across his chest.

Kynan Vital (left) is one of two people charged over the death of David Murphy at Springfield. He is pictured with Julia Murphy, daughter of David Murphy. Picture Supplied
Kynan Vital (left) is one of two people charged over the death of David Murphy at Springfield. He is pictured with Julia Murphy, daughter of David Murphy. Picture Supplied

His father was in the courtroom and was able to speak to him at the end of the hearing.

Kynan Vital outside Ipswich Courthouse during a committal hearing on February 23, 2021. Vital is charged with murder.
Kynan Vital outside Ipswich Courthouse during a committal hearing on February 23, 2021. Vital is charged with murder.

Mr Carroll said the history between Vital and the Murphy family might well be relevant as to the state of mind of the deceased on the night, and relevant for Macpherson’s defence case.

He said there may have been an incident a week or two prior to his death where Mr Murphy was said to have protected his daughter Julia with a baseball bat.

Ethan Macpherson has been charged with the murder of David Murphy.
Ethan Macpherson has been charged with the murder of David Murphy.

Questions would also be asked about a “stop and start” chase that involved a car in pursuit of the ute Vital and Macpherson were travelling in that night.

Magistrate Virginia Sturgess ruled on the applications and the line of questioning that would be allowed for some witnesses.

She ruled some questioning out as being too speculative, or not being relevant.

The court heard 15 witnesses would be called and the committal hearing likely to go into a third day.

Court dates were set aside for July.



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