Australia: Lethal violence against females off to a flying start in 2008
Item #1 Unemployed Brisbane funeral director charged with rape-murder of his 10 year old daughter
Item #2 22-year-old Canberra man charged with manslaughter after a hit-and-run incident killing his 18-year-old girlfriend
# 1Sydney Morning Herald ~~ Wednesday January 2 2008
Father rapes, murders daughter: policeGeorgina Robinson
A Brisbane man has been remanded in custody this morning after being charged with the murder, rape and indecent treatment of his daughter.
A 39-year-old unemployed funeral director from Bardon, appeared in Brisbane Magistrates Court after his 10-year-old daughter's body was found at a house at Bongaree, on Bribie Island, yesterday.
The case has been adjourned until March 10 to allow time for the man to undergo a mental health assessment.
The accused, who is the subject of an involuntary treatment order, had been released from hospital on December 22.
Defence lawyer Neil Lawler said his client would today be taken to the Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre to receive further psychiatric treatment.
The man had apparently left his two other children, a teenage girl and a nine-year-old boy, at the Bribie Island house with their dead sister.
He was found at Mount Glorious, west of Brisbane, yesterday afternoon in the company of his seven-year-old son.
Police said the boy was safe and well and he and his siblings are in protective custody.
As well as examining the Bribie Island property where the girl's body was found, police also cordoned off a Uniting Church, directly across the road, and the family's Bardon home.
They seized a blue plastic bag containing several items, which was hanging from a nativity scene in the church grounds.
The handle of what appeared to be a hammer was seen protruding from the top of the bag.
Redcliffe Police Inspector Mark Jones said the find was "unusual''.
It is believed the Bribie Island property was a holiday home the family moved into as recently as Saturday.
- with AAP
#2 The Brisbane Times | January 2, 2008
Boyfriend 'runs over girlfriend'Jonathon Dart and Paul Bibby
The family of a 22-year-old man charged with manslaughter over a hit-and-run incident in Canberra in which his 18-year-old girlfriend was killed is "shocked and devastated'' by the incident, a relative said this morning.
Amaranta Vrinalin Vega, 18, died early on New Year's Day after being hit by a car in the Canberra suburb of Gungahlin.
Her boyfriend of two-and-a-half years, Wayne Rino Antoniazzo of Narellan Vale in NSW, was allegedly driving the car and has been charged with manslaughter.
The 22-year-old faced the ACT Magistrates court today on three other charges as well - driving while disqualified, possessing a prohibited substance and not stopping after an accident causing death.
Antoniazzo's father, mother, uncle and a friend were in court to support him while there was a large contingent of the Vega family sitting on the opposite side of the courtroom.
Detective Senior Constable Katherine Laidler told the court Antoniazzo had been living with Ms Vega and her mother Gina Silva in Narellan Vale for two-and-a-half years.
Ms Silva had told Senior Constable Laidler that the relationship was "unhealthy'' as Ms Vega was infatuated with Antoniazzo but they constantly argued.
Wayne Antoniazzo's uncle, Frank Antoniazzo, said the family were "in a state of shock''.
"Everybody is devastated, particularly the parents - no one can believe this has happened,'' Mr Antoniazzo, who knew the couple, said.
Mr Antoniazzo said Wayne was "too devastated to talk'' yesterday, and the family was waiting for the outcome of the court case to find out what happened.
"Like any teenage couple they had their ups and downs, but this is just a total shock,'' he said.
"We feel incredibly sorry for Amaranta's parents. I have a daughter myself and I can't imagine what it would be like if something happened to her.''
Ms Vega and her boyfriend were from Campbelltown in Sydney and were visiting Ms Vega's aunt and uncle, Silvia and Vromel Vega, for New Year's Eve.
Witnesses said the two left the party and began arguing loudly in the street outside.
Rosy Lyons went outside her house across the road after she heard swearing. "They were arguing and he took off [in the car]," she said. "She first sat on the kerb for a while, just with her head down, and then she decided to go lie in the middle of the road - straight across it.
"I said we should go get her off the road because she's going to get hit, you can't see her down there," she said. Before she could reach Ms Vega, the car reappeared.
The car struck Ms Vega and continued down the road. "She lifted her head and you could see that she had seen the car coming, but it was too quick for her to even get up," Mrs Lyons said.
A resident, Daryl Cashmore, said the car later returned to the scene as a crowd gathered around Ms Vega. She was taken to Canberra Hospital, where she died a short time later.
Police arrested the driver about 7.20am near the Federal Highway at Majura after squads of police and sniffer dogs searched bushland near where he had abandoned the car.
"As to whether it was deliberate or not, that's something that we're currently investigating," Detective Sergeant Jason Kennedy said.
- with AAP