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 Claremont serial killer accused Bradley Edwards had previous conviction for attacking woman

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PostSubject: Claremont serial killer accused Bradley Edwards had previous conviction for attacking woman   Claremont serial killer accused Bradley Edwards had previous conviction for attacking woman EmptyTue 19 Feb 2019, 4:35 pm

Prosecutors have outlined allegations of a "fetish" for collecting women's underwear, a conviction for attacking a woman in 1990 and a claim of an "obsessive sexual interest in the abduction and rape of women" at a pre-trial hearing for the alleged Claremont serial killer.

The allegations were detailed in an opening address at a hearing to decide what evidence will be allowed to be presented at the July trial of Bradley Robert Edwards.

Mr Edwards, 50, is accused of murdering Sarah Spiers, Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon, who all vanished from the Claremont night precinct in the mid-1990s.

He is also accused of sexually motivated attacks on two other women, one in 1988 and another in 1995.

He denies all the allegations against him.

The 'Huntingdale prowler'

Prosecutor Carmel Barbagallo today outlined areas of evidence the state wished to present against Mr Edwards.

The first category was called "the Huntingdale prowler", which she said included evidence that in 1988, articles of clothing and women's underwear were stolen from clothes lines in the Huntingdale area.

Ms Barbagallo said the state planned to allege Mr Edwards, who was then aged 19, had broken into or attempted to break into houses within a one-kilometre radius of his family's home, and was seen wearing what were described as silky gowns.

She said those alleged events happened around the same time as an attack of which Mr Edwards is accused, where he allegedly broke into the family home of a 19-year-old woman, unplugged the telephone and tried to attack her.

Ms Barbagallo said it was alleged that at the time of the Huntingdale incidents, Mr Edwards was "an introverted, socially awkward man … who had a longstanding tendency for the collection and wearing of women's underwear".

"It's the state's case he had a fetish for women's underwear and garments," she said.

Ms Barbagallo said the state wanted to use the "Huntingdale prowler evidence" to show that Mr Edwards had a "propensity or tendency to prowl an area" in order to "seize the opportunity to commit offences with a sexual motive".

She said in Huntingdale he prowled on foot, while in Claremont he prowled in a vehicle.

"We say this is the manner in which he does what he does," she said.

Another category of evidence was called the "Telstra living witness", centring on allegations Mr Edwards would drive around the Claremont and Cottesloe areas in his Telstra work-issued car and stop and look at women or offer them lifts.

The court heard he allegedly told one woman "he was looking for damsels in distress like her".

It was also revealed Mr Edwards had a conviction for attacking a woman in 1990, in what was labelled "the Hollywood hospital" evidence.

The court heard he was working at the hospital as a Telstra technician and attacked a woman as she sat in a chair.

He tried to put a piece of material in her mouth but she kicked him and managed to break free, before cable ties were later found in his pocket.

Ms Barbagallo said Mr Edwards was convicted of common assault and sentenced to two years' probation.

The next category was called "the Karrakatta" evidence, which related to charges Mr Edwards was facing of abducting a 17-year-old girl in 1995, taking her to Karrakatta Cemetery and sexually assaulting her.

Ms Barbagallo said swabs taken from the victim matched the accused's DNA, which was taken after his arrest in December 2016.

The final category of evidence, called the "Claremont series", was the proposed evidence relating to the alleged murders of Ms Spiers, Ms Rimmer and Ms Glennon.

Ms Barbagallo said the women were all taken from the Claremont area, with DNA taken from Ms Glennon's body matching Mr Edwards and fibres found in her hair corresponding to fibres from the interior of the work car he was allocated at the time.

The car was seized by police in 2017.

Ms Barbagallo said the cause of Ms Glennon's death was consistent with her neck being cut.

The court heard that because of the decomposition of Ms Rimmer's body, the cause of death could not be determined, however she had "defects" to her neck.

The court was also told Ms Spiers was last seen alive leaning up against a Telstra bollard after calling a taxi, and that not long after this "a series of blood-curdling screams" were heard by a resident in Mosman Park.

A witness also claimed to have seen a white or cream car parked on the wrong side of the road, with Ms Barbagallo saying the description of the vehicle was similar to one of the two cars to which Mr Edwards was given access by his employer, Telstra.

Ms Barbagallo said all the allegations against Mr Edwards, as well as pornography and "violent and erotic stories" seized after his arrest, showed he had an "obsessive sexual interest in the abduction and rape of women … [that was] abnormal and depraved".

She also said boxes had been found at his home after his arrest, which contained women's underwear with parts cut out.

Details were also given of numerous "stories" allegedly accessed, downloaded or contributed to by Edwards and found on a computer at his house.

Ms Barbagallo said the stories, some of which were called "Chloe's story", "Nicola's story" and "Sophie's story", were about the abduction of women or about having non-consensual sex with women.

She said "Chloe's story" had a marked and striking similarity to what Mr Edwards was alleged to have done to the teenage girl at Karrakatta Cemetery in 1995.

At one point, Justice Stephen Hall noted for the benefit of everyone in the court that what Ms Barbagallo was presenting were "allegations" and not evidence.

"This is yet to be proven," he told the court.
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