Man's head used as 'bowling ball'
March 21, 2007 6:03am CST
March 21, 2007 - 3:52PM A teenager was decapitated and his head rolled down a hill like a "bowling ball" after he was stabbed 133 times, a Brisbane court has heard. James Patrick Roughan, 27, and Christopher Clark Jones, 23, both of Sandgate north of Brisbane, today pleaded not guilty in the Queensland Supreme Court to murdering 17-year-old Morgan Jay Shepherd on March 29, 2005. Both the accused have pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact and interfering with a corpse. Prosecutor Don McKenzie told the court that only days after he died, Shepherd's headless body was found by police buried in a shallow grave off a dirt road in Dayboro, north of Brisbane, following an anonymous tip-off. The jury heard the victim, who was a resident of a Brisbane youth hostel, had been drinking with both the accused at Roughan's home before a fight broke out. "It's unknown which of the two accused killed Jay Shepherd, but it is clear the other was assisting with a clear knowledge of what he was doing," Mr McKenzie told the court. He said a post-mortem examination revealed Shepherd had been stabbed 133 times and his head had been cut off by either an axe, saw or knife. "It can't be ruled out more than one knife was used to stab the body," Mr McKenzie said. Police allegedly found a tomahawk, knife, handsaw and pruning saw stained with the victim's blood in Roughan's shed, as well as blood-stained clothing featuring Jones' DNA. Mr McKenzie said a witness would testify Jones told friends about the alleged murder and the dumping of the body. "(Jones said) he had to find the head because James had used it like a bowling ball, rolling it down the hill," he said. Mr McKenzie said the same witness also alleged Jones said Roughan had stuck his hand up Shepherd's neck and used his head "like a puppet". "Roughan denied that," he said. Mr McKenzie said Shepherd's head had also been put on top of a paw-paw tree stump. The court also was told Roughan hugged Jones and told him "us Celts stick together" following the alleged murder. Mr McKenzie said that in a secretly recorded conversation between the pair in a prison van, Jones accused Roughan of "asking me in". "(Roughan told Jones) 'Murder, or helping me murder, whichever way you look at it, you're still going to do a long time with me'," he said. The court also heard Jones had to be taken to hospital for treatment to his hand because it had been accidentally stabbed by Roughan. Mr McKenzie said a witness would testify that he agreed to help the pair "move furniture" and only realised he was involved with dumping the body when he saw "two human legs sticking outside the boot". The trial, which is expected to last three weeks, continues tomorrow. Oh my god what sick sons of ...!!!!