4 May 2015

Blessie trial: blood and hair found on knife

9:00 pm on 4 May 2015

A police witness says a knife found at the apartment of the man accused of killing Auckland woman Blessie Gotingco had blood and hair on it.

Tributes to Blessie Gotingco at Birkdale Primary School.

Tributes to Blessie Gotingco at Birkdale Primary School. Photo: RNZ / Kate Newton

A 28-year-old man, who denies raping and murdering the 56 year-old Auckland woman, is on trial in the High Court at Auckland. He is defending himself in the trial.

Detective Roger Taylor was the officer put in charge of the scene of the accused man's North Shore apartment.

He told the High Court in Auckland he found a fish filleting knife in a sheath inside a kitchen drawer.

Mr Taylor said the knife appeared to have blood and fibres, including hair, still attached. The knife, in a perspex exhibit case, was held up today in court for the jury to see.

Questions about GPS data used to track movements

An expert in GPS used data from the Department of Corrections to track the movements of the accused around Birkdale over the time that Mrs Gotingco was killed and her body dumped at Eskdale cemetery on the North Shore.

Blessie Gotingco murder trial *****(NAME SUPPRESSION. OK TO USE IMAGE ON JUDGE'S RULING)*******

Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

Dr John Donaldson, who works for GEO-INT and specialises in using GPS, plotted data on maps that was captured by the accused man's GPS ankle bracelet.

The information put the accused man on Salisbury Road at the time the Crown said he ran Mrs Gotingco down in his car.

The following day it put the accused man in the cemetery where Mrs Gotingco's body was found two days later.

Questions have been raised about the accuracy of data captured by the bracelet.

Amicus lawyer Chris Wilkinson-Smith asked Dr Donaldson how two showed the accused travelling at 31 kilometres an hour through a building.

Dr Donaldson said he could not speak to the accuracy of the raw data that he used to make the maps.

The Crown's case is that the information puts the accused man on Salisbury Road at the time Mrs Gotingco was run down, and in the cemetery the following day.

It believes that the accused deliberately ran down Mrs Gotingco, bundled her into the back seat and took her to his home, where she was raped and killed.

But the accused told the jury in his opening address that he accidentally ran over Mrs Gotingco, but then took her home because he was on a curfew.

Last week, a pathologist told the court Mrs Gotingco had likely been hit by a car before being strangled and stabbed.

Note: The accused has name suppression but Radio New Zealand is able to run an image of him

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