Witnesses describe fight before stabbing in alleged murder

A KNIFE, broken glass and self-harm statements have been examined in the committal hearing for a man charged with murder after he allegedly stabbed his housemate to death in Earlville.

Joseph Raymond Thimble, 28, is accused of killing Marcus Russell Blair, 28, after an argument at a Downing Street house on January 28 last year.

Mr Thimble, who has not entered a plea, appeared in Cairns Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

The court heard he and Mr Blair had been drinking heavily before Mr Blair became aggressive.

Mr Thimble and Mr Blair then had an argument, which spilled into a physical fight on Downing Street that led to Mr Blair sustaining a fatal stab wound.

Joseph Raymond Thimble. PICTURE: FACEBOOK
Joseph Raymond Thimble. PICTURE: FACEBOOK

Of the 10 witnesses who have given evidence, Janarlie Teneal Raymond said she saw a knife at the top of the stairs at the house, but she did not see it during the fight.

Ms Raymond said she thought Mr Blair may have fallen on pieces of a beer bottle.

She said Mr Blair was out of control and became aggressive towards her and her father, Fabian Sean Raymond.

After witnessing the fight from inside the house, she went outside and saw Mr Blair "walking towards us then he fell to the ground".

Other witnesses who were asked about the knife said they did not see one.

Mr Thimble's partner, Laurina Geraldine Raymond, said she heard Mr Blair calling him to have a fight.

She said she then saw Mr Blair falling "right in front of my driveway" after the incident, which lasted about 20 minutes, close to midnight.

"I saw blood coming out … I was trying to help him," Laurina Raymond said.

Police outside the Downing Street house in Earlville in January 2020. PICTURE: STEWART MCLEAN
Police outside the Downing Street house in Earlville in January 2020. PICTURE: STEWART MCLEAN

Asked if she heard Mr Blair telling Mr Thimble "I'm going to slice you", she said no.

Mr Raymond said he heard Mr Blair yelling words to the effect of "I'm going to kill myself" during the fight before he fell to the ground.

Mr Raymond said Mr Blair wanted to fight him and Mr Thimble yelled "come down here, I'll slice you".

Doctor Paul Botterill, who prepared the autopsy report, said the injury was up to 16cm deep.

Dr Botterill said self-harm causing the injury could not be excluded as a possibility and that glass causing the injury was "conceivable but unlikely".

A number of the witnesses, including other neighbours, told the court Mr Blair had the upper hand most of the time during the fight and that he was "twice the size" of Mr Thimble.

The hearing will continue on April 13.

Mr Thimble is remanded in custody.

Originally published as Witnesses describe fight before stabbing in alleged murder


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