Man found guilty of Dumper murder says it was an accident
THE man found guilty of murdering Sunshine Coast real estate agent Brent Dumper at his daughter's house-warming party on the Gold Coast maintains it was an accident.
Bevan Carl Forsythe has disputed his conviction in the Queensland Court of Appeal, arguing the jury verdict in February was unreasonable and the trial justice erred in his directions about an accident defence.
He was on trial after pleading not guilty to murder, though he had admitted he was criminally responsible for Mr Dumper's death and had pleaded guilty to manslaughter.
Forsythe shot Mr Dumper at point-blank range at the party to celebrate his daughter, Jessie Anderson, moving into her home.
Ms Anderson had moved in with her partner, whose second cousin, Forsythe, lived next door.
Forsythe's barrister told the appeal court yesterday that his client thought the safety mechanism was engaged on the gun or it must have switched during a struggle.
Crown prosecutor Danny Boyle said there were four witnesses who corroborated each other and were "to a certain extent" consistent with ballistics and pathology evidence about Forsythe's actions.
He said it was clear the jury was satisfied discharging the gun was a conscious choice.
Mr Boyle said there was no complaint given at trial about the justice's directions on accident and there was no reasonable prospect such a direction would have resulted in a different verdict.
Forsythe also shot a second man, Michael McMillan, but he managed to push the shotgun away.
The pellets from the blast that followed put holes in his clothing and grazed his stomach.
The jury found Forsythe guilty of attempting to murder Mr McMillan.