News

Life in jail for 'brutal' murder

A BUNDABERG man has been sentenced to life in prison after a jury found him guilty of the "senseless and brutal" 2008 murder of his wife in which he used a log splitter to smash her head as she slept.

David Jeffrey Miller, 48, showed no emotion when the four-man, eight-woman jury delivered its guilty verdict after just three hours of deliberation, following a seven-day trial in Bundaberg Supreme Court.

Miller claimed he had killed his wife so she would not have to go back to jail on drug production charges the pair were facing, after police raided their home in May 2008 and found more than 140 marijuana plants and 35kg of the harvested drug.

They found a further 140 plants when they returned to investigate the murder.

Miller admitted to killing his wife, but claimed it had been part of a suicide pact the pair had made.

His defence said he was suffering from an "abnormality of mind", but psychiatrists gave varying evidence on whether that was actually the case.

During his sentencing, in which Miller also pleaded guilty to producing and possessing dangerous drugs, the court heard he was on a suspended sentence for growing more than 1500 marijuana plants on a commercial scale in 2003.

"(The murder) was a brutal, violent act," prosecutor Greg Cummings said.

"Mr Miller killed his wife when she was at her most vulnerable."

Mr Cummings said he did not believe Mrs Miller had wanted to die.

"It was the act of a man who decided to take out his problems on his partner," he said.

"There was no suicide pact."

Defence barrister Carl Heaton said his client had had a tough upbringing, never knowing his father and ending up in a foster home.

Justice Duncan McMeekin sentenced Miller to life in jail, with sentences of up to two-and-a-half years imposed for the drugs charges, all of which will run concurrently.

"This was a brutal, senseless murder," Justice McMeekin said.

Topics:  bundaberg supreme court, crime, jail, murder, prison




Join the Community.

Get your local news, your way.

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Laws bite into business

CHILDERS IS WILD: Macca gets some sun at Snakes Down Under. PHOTO: Ben Turnbull

Fees to go from $18 to $453 just to have the application looked at!

Aedes aegypti mosquito identified in Childers

Aedes Aegypti (dengue).

Residents urged to keep homes free of excess water

Latest deals and offers

NYPD join dance challenge

New York Police respond to NZ dance challenge.

New York's finest accept Kiwi dance challenge.

NZ Police Issue Dance Challenge

NZ Police doing the running man dance.

Video of NZ Police doing the running man dance and challenging police forces around...

Tender Sprouted Meats

BIG DAY AHEAD: Lawson, Rob and Braxton Cook prepare feed for the cattle at Tandara. Photo: Ben Turnbull

A video of Rob and Sarah Cook on their property at South Kolan.

Demand for acreage lots pushes up property prices

Property values in Cooroy have increased 25%

Property values jump in Cooroy and Peachester.

How a sacked real estate agent made $725k in four months

Agent is now under investigation by the industry watchdog

RBA warns of future apartment oversupply

Toowoomba: Crest Apartments and Burke & Wills, Ruthven Street ( view from Neil Street) Photo Bev Lacey / The Chronicle

RBA says oversupply of apartments poses risk to household finances