'I'm nervous. IDK why': Jayde Kendall's text before death

Jayde Kendall was a happy, conscientious student, witnesses have told the Brenden Bennetts murder trial.
Jayde Kendall was a happy, conscientious student, witnesses have told the Brenden Bennetts murder trial. Contributed

AS SHE arranged to meet the man now accused of murdering her, Jayde Kendall told him she was "nervous".

Five seconds later, at 11.30am on August 14, 2015, the Gatton teenager also texted: "IDK (I don't know) why" to Brenden Bennetts.

"Don't be," Mr Bennetts responded, adding a smiley face.

These text messages were shown to the jury in the trial of Brenden Jacob Bennetts, charged with the murder of Jayde Kendall.

The pair arranged to meet up later that day, and Mr Bennetts, then 18, assured 16-year-old Jayde things would "heat up".

Jayde disappeared that day. Her body was found thirteen days later.

Mr Bennetts has pleaded not guilty to murder, but guilty to interfering with a corpse and to manslaughter.

The Crown rejected the manslaughter plea, so the murder trial went ahead.

On Friday, John Geoffrey Tate told Brisbane Supreme Court he found Jayde's body.

A retired accountant, Mr Tate had a 50ha property in Upper Tenthill, about 13km south-west of Gatton.

His wife mentioned an odour near the front gate, and Mr Tate investigated.

He got on a quadbike, driving up an incline.

"I stopped because I picked up a bit of an odour," he said.

"I looked to the left first and then I climbed up. I walked in about six to eight feet (2-2.5m) east from that point and looked down."

He saw human remains. "I just backed out."

Mr Tate called police and showed an officer the area.

"It's extremely steep. You need a four-wheel drive or a quad. Something of that nature."

Experts could not determine how the Gatton teenager died, and tests carried out after Jayde's death were inconclusive.

"The body was in an advanced state of decomposition," forensic pathologist Dr Beng Ong said.

He told prosecutor Vicki Loury there were no signs of Jayde suffering from any disease "that could have caused or contributed to death".

A bone from Jayde's upper neck was found with a slight defect.

Dr Ong told defence counsel Michael Copley, a radiologist who studied the U-shaped bone from Jayde's upper neck, found no sign of fracture.

Dr Ong said the abnormality could have been the result of manual strangulation, or could have been something Jayde was born with.

Ms Loury earlier told jurors they could expect to hear from women whom Mr Bennetts choked or strangled during sex.

Laboratory scientist Deborah Nicoletti said a high vaginal swab tested positive for a "presumptive screening test" for seminal fluid but no sperm was detected.

The trial continues next week.


Topics:  jayde kendall

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