Murder case adjourned over sensitive evidence

SENSITIVE evidence has caused the committal hearing for two men accused of murder to be adjourned until next week.

A police officer was giving evidence earlier today about his dealings with one of the prosecution's key witnesses, Kerri-Anne Scully.

He revealed he had spoken to her while she was in jail - a conversation which was recorded - but he refused to say what was discussed because he was legally not allowed to speak about it.

Ms Scully was once in a relationship with Warwick man Vincent O'Dempsey, who has been accused of murdering Barbara McCulkin and her two daughters in 1974. Torbanlea man Garry Reginald Dubois has also been charged with their murders.

Ms Scully has said Mr O'Dempsey once admitted to her that he was "good" for the McCulkin murders.

She told this to police officer Detective Senior Constable Thomas Hess, who was cross examined today about conversations he had had with Ms Scully as part of the McCulkin cold case.

Detective Hess said he and another police officer had visited Ms Scully in jail and had a conversation with her, which was recorded.

When Mr O'Dempsey's barrister Terry O'Gorman asked Detective Hess what was discussed at this meeting, the police officer said he would not answer.

Prosecutor David Meredith said the witness could not legally answer it.

There were two occasions when Detective Hess was on the stand being cross examined when court adjourned to allow him to seek advice from the prosecution about what he could and could not say about sensitive topics.

Mr O'Gorman said he wanted access to the taped conversation between Detective Hess and Ms Scully.

The court was closed this afternoon to allow lawyers to discuss releasing the information.

The case was then reopened and adjourned until Monday.

Topics:  evidence mcculkin murder qps

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