Sarah Brown was murdered by her partner Russell Wood.
Sarah Brown was murdered by her partner Russell Wood.

Killer stayed ‘until girlfriend went cold’

AN alcoholic who choked and stabbed his estranged girlfriend to death in her Sydney home, then stayed with her body "until she went cold", will spend at least 19 years in jail.

Russell Brian Wood, 27, pleaded guilty in October to murdering 34-year-old Sarah Brown, who he attacked with a kitchen knife inside her Whalan house in September 2017.

There was an apprehended violence order in place at the time prohibiting him from approaching or contacting Ms Brown.

"No AVO was ever going to keep me away from her," Wood told police after the killing.

 

Wood will spend at least 19 years in jail for the murder. Picture: Dean Lewis
Wood will spend at least 19 years in jail for the murder. Picture: Dean Lewis

 

He said he couldn't remember what they had been fighting over but she had told him to get out of the house.

"I grabbed her, spun her around, grabbed her by the neck, dropped her to the ground, wrapped my legs around her legs and stretched her out," Wood, who had Brazilian Jiu Jitsu training, said.

Police were called to the property hours after the stabbing where they found Wood curled up next to Ms Brown, crying and saying "please don't be dead, baby, you can't be dead" among other things.

 

Ms Brown was murdered by her partner Sydney's north west.
Ms Brown was murdered by her partner Sydney's north west.

 

In the NSW Supreme Court on Friday, Justice Geoffrey Bellew jailed him for 25-and-a-half years with a non-parole period of 19 years and one month.

He said Wood had a "flagrant disregard" for the orders made to protect Ms Brown.

"The deceased was murdered in an atmosphere of serious domestic violence," the judge said.

He concluded the murder was further aggravated by Wood's intoxication.

The "on-again, off-again" couple had been drinking together earlier that evening at a tavern in Mount Druitt but Woods left before Ms Brown and waited at her home until she arrived after midnight.

 

Sarah Brown was murdered by her partner Russell Wood.
Sarah Brown was murdered by her partner Russell Wood.

 

Their relationship had ended one week prior to the murder, according to the agreed facts.

It was "inconceivable" - based on his record of domestic violence assaults - that the self-confessed alcoholic "did not realise his ingestion of excessive alcohol would cause him to become violent", Justice Bellew said.

Wood's sentence was backdated meaning he'll be eligible for parole from October 2036 when he'll be 45.



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