No charges despite horror evidence over "Norma's" death

NOBODY will be charged over a drunken woman bleeding to death from massive vaginal trauma on a beach near Iluka.

Coroner Michael Barnes concluded Adrian Attwater, 42, and Paul Maris, 46, lied about their role in the woman's death, burnt a blood-soaked mattress to save themselves from incrimination, and took advantage of someone who was too drunk to give consent in 2011.

But the Director of Public Prosecutions has opted not to press charges.

The woman, given the pseudonym "Norma" out of respect for her family, died a painful and "callous" death while camping at Ten Mile Beach on January 27, 2011.

Mr Barnes said there could be "no doubt" Mr Attwater inflicted the injuries in the back of his troop carrier that caused her death.

"Mr Attwater initially admitted this activity could be characterised as 'fisting' but later retracted that and claimed to have engaged in more benign, less forceful activity..." Mr Barnes said.

"Mr Maris continued to claim Mr Attwater had 'fisted' Norma and both men told those first on the scene when Norma collapsed and died the next morning that they had engaged in 'wild sex' the previous evening."

A forensic expert found Norma's vaginal injuries were consistent with "Mr Maris's demonstration of a vigorous punching motion", and "were more severe than those which occur in even precipitous childbirth".

Blood samples taken from Norma after her death gave a blood-alcohol concentration of between 0.303% and 0.35% - more than six times the legal driving limit.

Cases against the men were dropped in March last year. But Mr Barnes found there was enough evidence for a jury to convict the two men over Norma's death.

A spokeswoman for the Director of Public Prosecutions confirmed the matter had been handed back to the Coroner but would make no further comment.

As he summed up the case back in November, Mr Barnes said Norma led a sad life that led to a sad death.

"Norma did not lead an inspirational life of great achievement, but nor did she do harm to others," he said.

"Indeed, it seems she was far more frequently the victim of mistreatment at the hands of those she should have been protected by.

"She was dearly loved by her family and she returned that affection.

"I know she is sadly missed by her children, her siblings, her parents and her extended family. I offer them all my sincere condolences.

"The court expresses its contempt and disgust for the callous disregard for her welfare shown by her supposed friends, Messrs Attwater and Maris."

-APN NEWSDESK


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