REVEALED: Reason police were delayed attending stab scene
Shocking evidence has been heard at the Alva Beach inquest describing how police officers at Ayr station were delayed attending Dean Webber's home as they were babysitting a drink driver.
Two Townsville communication officers working the night Thomas Davey and Corey Christensen were killed gave evidence this afternoon, telling Cairns Magistrates Court that they believed the initial call for help did not seem like a serious job.
Senior Constable Michael Arope received the initial notification from Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) after Dean Webber's first call for an ambulance at 12.24am, October 1, 2018.
The QAS team advised police that Mr Webber told them he didn't feel safe, there were men outside his home, he was locked inside his Topton St house and a patient, Candice Locke, had come off a buggy.
Paramedics were "staged" down the road at 12.33am, waiting for police to make the scene safe before they got closer.
Less than 30 minutes later, Mr Christensen and Mr Davy had been stabbed by Mr Webber.
Sen constable Arope, who was the assistant communication coordinator, logged the job with police as a code three, or "routine" job, saying at no stage did he think to heighten the priority to "urgent".
He did not take another look at the job, saying he didn't "micromanage" police crews once they received a job.
"I received the job, put it on, did the checks and approved it… all of about two minutes," he said.
Deputy State Coroner Jane Bentley questioned Sen-constable Arope's definition of "urgent", asking what would warrant an urgent, or a code two, job in his mind.
Sen-constable Arope said he would have changed the code if he received information that the men had kicked the door down, or were armed.
"There wasn't too much information in there other than they were outside," he said.
A civilian communication operator, Kylie Biddell, was also working on the night of the stabbing, and notified Ayr police that there was a job for them.
She spoke with First Year Constable Noel Dwyer about 12.42am after QAS had called their centre following up how far away police were.
Ms Biddell said constable Dwyer was delayed as he was the only officer at the station and he had a drink driver in lockup.
About 12.53am, Ms Biddell logged new notes on the job log saying that the crew would attend once an objection to bail had been signed.
The job eventually becomes a code two, or urgent job, at 12.59am.
At 1.04am, a police officer is called in to babysit the drink driver at the Ayr station, and officers were preparing to leave
The woman at the centre of a double stabbing has given a previously unheard account of events leading up to the deaths of Thomas Davy and Corey Christensen, saying she may have "exaggerated" some things she said to emergency call takers.
Candice Locke, 31, was cross-examined for more than two hours at the inquest into the double stabbing of Mr Christensen and her boyfriend, Mr Davy, with several barristers emphasising holes in her memory, changes to her story and exactly what she recalls inside Dean Webber's home.
Ms Locke started her evidence yesterday, saying she had met Mr Christensen and his friend Louis Bengoa at Alva Beach on the afternoon of September 30, and they invited them to a party up the road.
Ms Locke said she was drunk, and had a fight with Mr Davy over her behaviour during the night.
Mr Davy left the party, and he sent Ms Locke a series of text messages airing his frustration that she wouldn't leave with him, which were shown at court today.
"I'm waiting down the road for twenty minutes. Pull yourself together. Cone (sic) get a lift with me or I'll just camp here the night and you can come get your keys from me," his first text, sent at 10.07pm, said to Ms Locke.
Another text sent from Mr Davy to Ms Locke four minutes later tells her where he is, pulled up under coconut trees she is familiar with, saying he was going to sleep there the night.
Instead of texting Mr Davy back, Ms Locke got on the buggy with Mr Bengoa to try and find him, but told the court she may not have shared her intentions with Mr Bengoa when they set off.
"I mustn't have seen this message … I don't recall this one," she said about the text from Mr Davy explaining where he was parked.
Counsel for Mr Bengoa, Justin Greggery QC, suggested that Ms Locke wasn't looking for Mr Davy and just wanted to go for a ride. She denied this.
During the ride, Ms Locke came off the buggy and hit "hard sand", injuring her shoulder.
She told the court she was seated on the right side of the buggy when she fell, but she injured her left shoulder.
Barrister for Mr Weber, Harvey Walters, pointed out that in emergency calls, her first police interview and in a conversation with doctors, that Ms Locke told them she was pushed from the buggy.
"I can't recall … unfortunately that part's a bit foggy," she said.
"I just remember the big thud."
Lawyer for the Davy family, Chris Minnery, suggested Ms Locke was "doing something silly" on the buggy, but she denied this.
Mr Walters also questioned her level of intoxication, and Ms Locke admitted she had a drinking problem at the time.
Ms Locke told the court how Mr Bengoa "sorta laughed" at her when she fell, and told her to get back on the buggy, but she got off and went and hid behind a car that was nearby.
Mr Bengoa eventually came back with Mr Christensen, and Ms Locke got back on the buggy for a short time before asking them to stop.
"I said I'm going to get help."
She walked to Mr Webber's home, saying she did not hear Mr Bengoa or Mr Christensen calling out for her.
She said she did not understand why they stuck around, and didn't want to go back outside with them because she felt "uncomfortable".
"I wasn't sure why they were even there as I told them I was going to get help."
Mr Webber called triple-0, and Ms Locke said she sat crouched in the corner of his kitchen while he spoke with police and ambulance.
During one of the phone calls, she told an operator that Mr Christensen and Mr Bengoa were acting "crazy", and she sought refuge in Mr Webber's home.
Under cross-examination by Mr Minnery today, she said that "may have been an exaggeration".
Ms Locke said the men were "just banging and (calling) my name" outside Mr Webber's home.
She was asked whether their voices seemed aggressive, and she answered "yes".
Ms Locke was also asked if it seemed like the men were concerned for her welfare, to which she answered "no."
Ms Locke said she had no idea Mr Davy arrived, saying if she had heard his voice she would have come out of the house.
At the time of the stabbing, Ms Locke said she remained crouched in the kitchen and heard what sounded like a "punch up" on the other side of the kitchen counter in the lounge room area.
She said it was hard to tell whether both men had entered the home, but said it was possible that the sound of the "scuffle" involved just one man.
In a recorded phone call, Mr Webber tells an operator that the man had ripped his door off. Under cross-examination by the Christensen family's counsel, Justin Godbolt, Ms Locke said she never heard the sound of a door being moved off its tracks.
When she concluded her evidence, Ms Locke started crying, saying that not leaving with Tom that night was her biggest regret.
"That's my biggest regret not leaving with Tom that night," she said through tears.
"I just want to offer my condolences to the family.
"And also to Dean's family, to all the trauma they've gone through."
DAY TWO, OCTOBER 13:
The second day of the Alva Beach inquest will begin with Candice Locke taking the stand again to be cross-examined.
Ms Locke is expected to be questioned for at least an hour this morning, before a fresh stack of witnesses give their evidence for the rest of the day.
Among these witnesses is Senior Constable Michael Arope, Kylie Biddel (QPS) and Emma Savatovic (QAS).
It is understood these witnesses took the emergency calls from Dean Webber the night Tom Davy and Corey Christensen were stabbed.
DAY ONE, OCTOBER 12:
A WOMAN'S blood curdling scream could be heard before a line goes dead.
The next thing you hear is Dean Webber, telling an emergency call taker "I think I've killed him."
The triple-0 call is part of chilling evidence given Monday during the first day of the highly anticipated inquest into the double stabbing of Thomas Davy, 27, and Corey Christensen, 37, at Alva Beach two years ago.
They were stabbed by Mr Webber, then 19, who was harbouring Candice Locke inside his home after she came off a buggy, injuring her shoulder, and knocked on his door asking for help.
Family and friends of the victims held each other, crying into tissues, while listening to almost 60 minutes worth of recordings.
Three recorded phone calls were placed by Mr Webber from inside his Topton St home, with the first call to paramedics made at 12.24am, October 1, 2018.
Mr Webber, whose voice started out calm, told the man on the other end of the line that Ms Locke needed an ambulance as she had a dislocated shoulder after being pushed out of a buggy.
He told the operator the people who pushed her were outside his house, he was "not safe" and didn't know what to do.
The operator heightens the call priority and calls in police after Mr Webber yells out.
"Mate can you go, yep, get off my property mate, get off my property," he can be heard saying to the people outside.
Ms Locke can be heard crying in the background as Mr Webber tries to comfort her.
She is a stranger to him, and he tells the operator that her knocks at his door woke him up and he called paramedics about three minutes later.
More than 20 minutes pass and no ambulance or police arrive, so he calls police at 12.52am, telling police "they are breaking in".
"They're 2m away outside my front door … please send someone," Mr Webber said.
"They're trying to get this injured girl."
Ms Locke gets on the phone, telling the police officer the two men outside are Mr Christensen and his friend, Louis Bengoa, who she was riding on a buggy with before injuring her shoulder.
"I got in the buggy with one of them … he went real crazy and pushed me out," she said.
The police operator, who says the pair had "already talked so much s---" to him, said he logged a job with Ayr Police. While he spoke, a loud commotion and yelling can be heard in the background before Ms Locke screams.
The police operator disconnects the call, saying "thank you, bye".
In that time, Mr Davy and Mr Christensen had been stabbed. Minutes later, Mr Webber's voice is frantic on his third and final phone call to emergency services as he says "I need police right now, I just stabbed a bloke who broke into my house".
"There's blood everywhere, I think I killed him … I'm scared," he says through tears.
The operator tells him to lock himself in a room, but Mr Webber says "I can't, they ripped the door off".
It was almost 1am and police and paramedics still had not arrived.
"He's not moving … I can taste his blood," Mr Webber says. "I think I stabbed him in the heart … I tried everything I could to protect myself … I thought they were going to kill me."
Mr Webber tells the operator that a group of men are standing around one of the victims, and not helping him.
"There's four of them … they are just standing there … not holding pressure on the wound or anything," he says.
At this stage he realises he is still carrying the knife, and puts it down on a table when asked by the operator.
"I'm gonna die, I'm gonna die," he says while watching the men standing around a victim's body.
The lights are still off and curtains are drawn in Mr Webber's home, and police and paramedics eventually arrive 20 minutes into the 40-minute phone call.
Mr Webber then turns on the lights, and cries more.
"Oh my god … oh my god …. there is blood everywhere … it's everywhere," Mr Webber says, sobbing uncontrollably.
"The police are here to help us," he tells his dog barking at the door.
Police enter the house minutes later, yelling "don't move, don't move", before the call is terminated.
Originally published as REVEALED: Reason police were delayed attending stab scene