Australia: Accused fake cop in Vic home invasion

Australia: Accused fake cop in Vic home invasion

June 11, 2019– Mary Greeley News – A man is on trial for allegedly impersonating a police officer as he entered a Melbourne home to steal drugs, before attempting to kill two occupants.

William James Scriven appeared in front of a Supreme Court jury on Monday over his alleged co-involvement in a home invasion at Lilydale on July 26 in 2016, where two men who lived at the Mitchell Road home were hit with a hammer.

Scriven has been charged with one count of aggravated burglary, two counts of attempted murder, two counts of causing serious injury and one count of theft.

It is alleged Scriven and another man entered the home about 5am wearing what looked like police uniforms in order to steal drugs.

Prosecutor Matthew Fisher told the jury Neal Cairns, who lived at the house, was asleep in the kitchen when the men entered shouting: “This is the police, get on the floor facedown. Where are your drugs?”.

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Mr Cairns complied, believing the men were genuine.

“One of the accused began stomping on Mr Cairns’ head … he tried to get to his feet and then was hit with a nash hammer,” Mr Fisher said.

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Mr Cairns heard “‘we’ve killed your mate, now tell us where your drugs are'” before again being struck, Mr Fisher said.

The victim was bashed unconscious.

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Another man Scott Sykes entered the room and was told “I will kill you” by one of the accused, the jury heard.

Mr Sykes was subsequently beaten. The men fled with cannabis and ice.

A neighbor called police, who arrived about 5.30am to find the victims lying on the floor and believed to be dead.

“Blood had been sprayed on parts of the walls, ceiling and there were some pools of blood on the floor,” Mr Fisher said.

“When they attacked Mr Cairns and Mr Sykes they attempted to kill them. It was a ferocious, sustained attack.”

Mr Cairns suffered life-threatening injuries including a spinal fracture and lung collapse. He was put in an induced coma for two days.

Mr Sykes had skull fractures and stab wounds penetrating his head and face.

A witness said she later saw Scriven washing part of a police uniform.

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Seven cigarette butts and duct tape were found near the crime scene, with some containing Scriven’s DNA, Mr Fisher said.

Bloodied hammers and two snap-lock bags containing ice were also found on neighboring properties.

Scriven allegedly told a witness that a pink exfoliating glove found near the house was “the only thing police had on him”.

Mr Cairns later identified Scriven on a photo board as the second attacker.

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Scriven’s lawyer Colin Mandy SC said there was no doubt the men had been “attacked violently and viciously in their home. But it was not Mr Scriven”.

Mr Mandy said his client had been in Traralgon at the time.

“The prosecution has the wrong bloke,” the barrister said.

He questioned how and when Scriven’s DNA had been put on the items, and what procedure was used to identify him, claiming he wasn’t there.

Mary Greeley News

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