News

Man was challenging Blair to fight, witness tells court

UPDATE: A witness has testified Cleveland Paul Clay was challenging Simeon Frederick Blair to fight in the hour before Mr Clay was allegedly fatally attacked at a Maryborough pub in 2012.

The witness, who was 16 at the time of the attack, was in a group with both men in the hours before Blair allegedly hit him in the head head with a piece of wood. 

He appeared before the Maryborough Supreme Court on Wednesday morning in the trial of Blair, who has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Clay.

The witness detailed how he saw both men in a scuffle on a staircase at the Carlton Hotel, before Mr Clay fell from the staircase to the ground below.

Other men who were with Mr Clay and Blair on the night of the alleged attack are due to appear as witnesses on Wednesday.

EARLIER: Close to 30 witnesses will appear in the trial of a Maryborough man accused of violently attacking another man with a piece of wood, causing "catastrophic" head injuries that led to his death.

Simeon Frederick Blair is facing trial in the Maryborough Supreme Court charged with the murder of Cleveland Paul Clay on April 28, 2012.

Crown prosecutors allege Blair and Clay were involved in an altercation on the stairs of the Carlton Hotel in the early hours of the morning before Mr Clay fell from the landing to the ground below.

The case alleges Blair then continued to attack Mr Clay and followed him from an area next to the stairs over to a car port, picking up a piece of discarded wood and using it to attack Mr Clay, causing several fractures to his face and base of his skull.

Crown Prosecutor Glen Cash said the crown case alleges a number of other men may have been involved in the initial altercation on the stairs, however it was Blair who dealt the fatal injuries to Mr Clay.

Mr Case told the jury the catastrophic injuries Mr Clay suffered during the alleged attack in the car port were simply not survivable.

Photos of Mr Clay's injuries, a large pool of blood on the ground and photos of bloodstains and what appeared to be a piece of scalp and hair on the wall of the car port were tendered as evidence.

The lead investigating police officer of the case and a scenes of crimes police officer appeared before the trial on Tuesday.

Two people who were with both Blair and Mr Clay on the night and saw the moments leading up to the alleged attack also appeared as witnesses on Tuesday.

One man, who was 16 at the time, described how Mr Clay told him he intended to bash Blair.

He told the court a group of men and teens which included Mr Clay and Blair had visited several Maryborough pubs and Rick's Pies on the night before returning to the Carlton Hotel where the attack happened.

The trial is expected to last at least a fortnight.

Topics:  maryborough supreme court, murder case



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