Woman, 41, jailed for accessory to murder
AS GUARDS led the third person involved in Amanda Quirk's murder into custody, her family felt her soul could finally rest.
Rachel Narelle Smith, 41, was sentenced to seven years jail, with parole eligibility after three years, for being an accessory after Ms Quirk's murder on March 31, 2010, at the Booval home she shared with her and Christopher James Swan, 39.
Swan has already been sentenced to life behind bars for the brutal killing and dumping Ms Quirk's body in forest in northern NSW.
A Brisbane Supreme Court jury took about a day and a half to deliberate, first finding her not guilty on murder or manslaughter charges before convicting her as an accessory.
Justice Peter Lyons said Smith had aided Swan after the murder when she returned to the Dudleigh St home three days later, grabbed a garbage bag filled with evidence and burned it in bushland.
He said she had also cleaned up the blood in the house straight after the murder, let Swan drive her car to dump Ms Quirk's body across the state border and had given a false account of her flatmate's whereabouts when a concerned friend asked where she was.
The court heard Smith, from Toowoomba, turned to drugs after her two-year-old son was killed running out on a road.
Michelle Anne Mondientz, 32, had previously been sentenced to five years jail for her role in the killing. She testified in both trials for Swan and Smith.
Ms Quirk's mother, Ann Lappin, and sister, Lisa Quirk, said they hoped to turn the three-year anniversary on Easter Sunday and Ms Quirk's birthday on June 28 into celebrations now.
"They're very difficult, but now we might try and celebrate and not feel as sad and do things Amanda used to like and do," Ms Lappin said.
"She can be set free properly now," Lisa said.