THREE BLOWS with a baseball bat were enough to crush a man's skull and kill him more than a decade ago, a witness to the alleged murder has told the court.
Crown witness Scott Marle continued his evidence in the supreme court trial of Bruce Anthony Coss, 49, in Moree on Thursday.
Mr Marle described what happened in the dark street ouside Coss' home in the town of Bingara, north of Tamworth, late one night in December 2010. He said Coss had hit his 45-year-old neighbour Darren Royce Willis twice with a bat.
"The third and final hit was when I was screaming and he's crushed his skull as far as I'm aware," Mr Marle said.
The trial heard recorded conversations between Mr Marle and another witness.
The men were recorded discussing what Coss might have done with Mr Willis' body, which has never been found.
Mr Marle could be heard saying in one of the recordings that he had asked Coss on two separate occasions why he had hit Mr Willis.
"I said, 'what did you even f***ing do it for, like what the f*** did he do to deserve that'," Mr Marle said.
He was recorded saying Coss told him it was because Mr Willis was going to dob him into his boss, but said Coss later changed his story to say it was because Mr Willis had done something to him in childhood.
Justice Hament Dhanji heard recorded phone conversations in which Mr Marle claimed blood had been seen in a yellow ute when it was sold by Coss some time after the alleged murder, but Coss blamed it on pig chasing.
In a recorded phone call with Mr Marle, Coss is heard blaming another eyewitness for laying the blame on him for Mr Willis' disappearance in order to get a $350,000 police reward for information.
Coss said on the night in question he got drunk, had a "good f***ing time" and came home to sleep.
Coss has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Willis in late 2010. The investigation restarted in 2018 after fresh information was reported to detectives. Coss was arrested in October 2019.
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