Weapons cache at murder house

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Paul Van Lieshout Hunt, Reporter

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The Supreme Court has heard evidence of a weapons stockpile on the property where 18-year-old Aaron Pajich was brutally murdered in 2016.

Police witnesses say they found sets of hunting knives, a garrote, surgical saw, machete, a sabre, scalpels, meat cleavers and military style knives, throughout a house in Orelia, where the body of Mr Pajich was buried in the backyard.

Jemma Victoria Lilley, 26, stands accused of murdering Mr Pajich by stabbing him in the chest and using a garrote to slit the teenager’s throat.

Senior Constable Barnes was a leading investigator at the crime scene and told the court the sheer number of weapons surprised him.

“A number of knives were taken [for evidence]. We found a lot more knives at this house than we expected,” Barnes said.

The knives were found in three main bedrooms, lying under the beds, sitting on tables and in the garage.

Two women stand accused of the murder.  Lilley, pleaded not-guilty in 2016 and maintains her innocence. Her housemate Trudy Clare Lenon, 43, also pleaded not-guilty of murder, but has since admitted to being an accessory to the murder.

It is alleged that Ms Lilley stabbed and garroted Mr Pajich and buried the teenager before pouring concrete on top of the shallow grave. Ms Lenon says she witnessed the murder and then helped to clean up the house and bury Mr Pajich.

Ms Lenon’s 13-year-old son, who spoke to the court, helped to tile the concrete with kitchen tiles.

Ms Lilley and Ms Lenon both looked calm in the court, while police investigating officers were put on the stand explaining their findings when searching the house. The large scale search and documentation of the crime scene took four days and more than two teams of investigators.

Presiding Justice Stephen Hall described the victim as the “subject of foul play.” The trial is sitting before a full jury bench and is expected to run for a further four weeks.

ECU Daily has more coverage of the trial here.

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Weapons cache at murder house