Two weapons likely in Syeid Alam’s killing and beheading
TWO Queensland forensic pathologists say it was likely two weapons were used on Syeid Alam - one to cut his throat and a possible second one to decapitate his head.
And there was evidence of animal having taken a "significant amount of flesh", including from the left thigh region and the genitals and left groin region.
This was revealed to a jury in a Supreme Court trial where Mohammed Khan has pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Alam on or about April 5, 2016.
Dr Philip Storey, who works at the John Tonge Centre in Brisbane, gave evidence on Friday via video link to the Rockhampton court.
The court heard Dr Storey's evidence was based on what he read in Dr Nigel Buxton's notes and photographs from the autopsy of Mr Alam on April 19, 2016, as Dr Buxton was not available to give evidence.
"The deceased's head has been completely removed from the body at the level of the lower neck," Dr Storey said.
"And at the skin there is what we call a sharp force injury - an injury caused by a weapon with a sharp edge. Something that has inflicted a cutting action rather than a tearing action."
He said this type of injury was evident all the way around and has resulted in complete decapitation.
"Dr Buxton has given an overall wound length as 200mm," Dr Storey said.
"At the central front of the neck extending on to the lateral left side of the neck, a wound measuring 90mm in length."
He said everything - the windpipe, jugular veins, internal arteries and oesophagus - appeared to have been cut at the same level.
The court heard there was an injury to C5 and C6 vertebrae bones of the spine, which is located at the lower part of the neck.
"Dr Buxton has described some chipping of the bone evident at the front of the body, which is the very front part the bone C6," Dr Storey said.
He said greater force and mass would be required to cause chipping or fracturing to the vertebrae.
"There's been a fairly clean cut through the soft tissues at the front of the neck given the nature of the wounding of the skin and also the way the windpipe has been cut - it's quite clean, it's all in one plane, there's no jagged edges to it," Dr Storey said.
"But going back to the cervical vertebrae, there's chipping and irregular fragment broken off the lateral part of one of the bones. And the skin at the posterior part of the neck - at the back of the neck - is more irregular.
"So it is possible that more than one implement has been responsible."
The court heard there were no injuries to Mr Alam's arms or ankles that would suggest any binding and no defensive wounds.
His lungs also showed no signs of being submerged in water prior to death and contained no foreign materials.
The cause of death was determined to be a cut throat and decapitation.
Defence barrister Andrew Hoare asked, if someone was alive when their throat was cut that way, would there be blood spray?
Dr Storey said it would be reasonable to expect there would be blood spray if the arteries, which pump away from the heart, were cut.
He said the area covered by such a spray would be dependant on what was in the immediate area and the position of the body.
"If they are lying down, the immediate vicinity of the body would be likely to capture spraying blood," Dr Storey said.
During cross examination, Dr Storey said it was reasonable to infer there was more than one strike to achieve the severing of the hard structures on the neck.
And that he agreed with the opinion of Dr Buxton that while it was possible a single instrument was used, it was likely two instruments were used - one for the initial cutting of the throat and another for the decapitation.
The evidence from Dr Storey concluded the crown's case. Mr Khan has declined to take the stand or produce evidence in his defence.
The trial is set to continue on Monday with closing addresses by both parties.