New details emerge in murder trial
THE man accused of stabbing Byron Bay woman Lynda Tregerthan to death at her home six years ago yesterday admitted to attacking the woman around the time of her death.
However, Vita Tantra yesterday continued to insist in the Supreme Court at Lismore he did not kill Ms Tregerthan and said he did not even learn of her death until much later.
Tantra, who is facing a judge-alone trial after being found mentally unfit to face a jury, told the court he punched Ms Tregerthan after becoming angry while confronting her over what he described as ‘identity theft’.
Tantra said the identity theft was ‘psychological’. In a 2007 statement to his solicitor he described it as ‘psychic stalking’.
Asked to explain how he believed Ms Tregerthan had stolen his identity, Tantra responded: “... by seeing herself as being me. It’s a computer problem; people take an identity and pretend to be that person ... I’m not sure if she (Ms Tregerthan) was computerised or not ... Many women like to pretend to be men.”
Tantra told the court he went to Ms Tregerthan’s home to confront her about the issue. When she rejected his accusations he hit her.
“I was angry that she wasn’t admitting anything,” Tantra said. “When I raised identity theft she just denied it and said ... that it was my problem and didn’t have anything to do with her.”
Tantra said he punched her ‘in the head or in the chest’. The court heard Ms Tregerthan had a broken nose and broken ribs when her body was found, but Tantra denied causing those injuries. He also rejected suggestions he had a knife at the house and stabbed her to death.
When asked to explain his DNA being found under her fingernails and on a blood-stained pillowcase, Tantra said Ms Tregerthan had tried to defend herself when he attacked her and may have dug her fingernails into his arm.
The trial continues.