News

Tensions rise at Field trial, on the CCTV screen and off

Craig Field, appearing in Lismore Court for a king-hit alleged to have been responsible for the death of  Tweed cattle farmer Kelvin Kane.
Craig Field, appearing in Lismore Court for a king-hit alleged to have been responsible for the death of Tweed cattle farmer Kelvin Kane. Cathy Adams

RISING tensions were evident on CCTV shown in Lismore Supreme Court yesterday between both Shaun Fathers and friends of the late Kelvin Kane on the night of Mr Kane's death at the Kingscliff Beach Hotel in 2012.

Mr Fathers' friend, former NRL star Craig Field, is charged with murder over the alleged king-hit death of Mr Kane in the hotel's rear carpark on July 15.

But the tension was not only evident on CCTV, with Supreme Court Justice Elizabeth Fullerton expressing her frustration at not being able to display the CCTV footage large enough for the jury to clearly see.

"It's all very well getting this evidence on the record but the jury can literally see nothing," she said.

"I'm staggered that the facilities are not available for the presentation of the Crown case in a murder trial in the Supreme Court.

"We have lost a full half day of court time. The Chief Justice of NSW will be getting an email from me this afternoon."

Once a TV was connected and placed in front of the jury, Detective Senior Constable Phillip Parker walked the jury through five hours of CCTV footage that was condensed to 80 minutes, assisted by Crown Prosecutor Lee Carr.

Det Parker identified 41-year-old Field and Mr Fathers, both wearing light blue t-shirts, in the TAB bar of the hotel from 6.27pm.

By 6.31pm, Mr Fathers began associating with friends of Mr Kane's, Lauren Grainger and Mark Frost, while Field sat at a table in the middle of the bar.

For more than 14 minutes, Field was shown on the footage standing beside a pool table talking to Lyn Berger, until Mr Kane, 50, arrived at 6.59pm.

During this time Mr Fathers is captured associating with Ms Grainger and Mr Frost and going to and from the smoking area at the rear of the hotel.

After arriving Mr Kane went straight to the bar before approaching Field, Mr Frost and Ms Berger near the pool table at 7pm. Field walked to the bar.

At 7.36pm Mr Fathers is captured standing up and putting his hands up in the air before throwing the chair he was sitting on across the room.

Field then approached and stood between Mr Fathers and Mr Frost who appeared to be having a heated discussion.

Minutes later Field is shown putting his hand on Mr Fathers' chest, pushing him away from Mr Frost and Ms Berger.

When the court adjourned Mr Carr said about 30 minutes of the CCTV footage remained to be shown.

Justice Fullerton warned the jury not to try and interpret what was happening in the CCTV footage but to wait and consider the oral evidence from witnesses.

The trial continues today.

Topics:  craig field editors picks murder trial



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