Brisbane mourns as accused faces court

Written by admin on 30/07/2019 Categories: 苏州美睫

As an accused killer avoided eye contact in a packed Brisbane courtroom, the scene where the horrific crime took place was silent.


Flowers, letters, soft toys and smiling photos of murdered French student Sophie Collombet adorn a rotunda in a tranquil part of Kurilpa Park overlooking the Brisbane River.

The tribute on Wednesday morning was in start contrast to the grim scene which confronted a passer-by past almost a fortnight ago.

There, he found Ms Collombet’s naked and battered body after she made the fateful decision to walk home through the park on a night of thunder and torrential rain.

The rotunda has since become a place for the 21-year-old Griffith University business student’s friends to remember her and for Brisbane’s residents to mourn a carefree visitor who, for a brief time, had called their city home.

Brisbane couple Matthew and Sue Sciacca stood silently as they reflected on what happened there and thought of their own daughter about to go to university.

“In some ways it makes you feel personally ashamed that you live in a place where someone has done this,” Mr Sciacca told AAP.

“It’s a reflection of the city. It’s a reflection of the people.”

Tributes left by strangers shared a similar theme.

A letter addressed to Ms Collombet’s parents, Guy and Corrine, read: “I would just like you to know that you are not alone and that the people of this city … care about you all very much.

“We are all just so sorry.”

Letters from those who knew Sophie, including friend Roselyne Trott, reflected on how kind and happy she was.

“Your beautiful shining eyes and your infectious smile will be forever in everyone’s minds and hearts,” Ms Trott wrote.

One woman had tears welling in her eyes as she paused briefly mid-jog to view the tributes.

Directly across the river, less than a kilometre away, a different scene was emerging.

A 25-year-old man stood in the dock of Brisbane Magistrates Court with his back to a packed public gallery and his eyes fixed on the floor.

The magistrate read out his charges: murder, rape, deprivation of liberty and armed robbery.

His mother sobbed at the back of the courtroom, comforted by the accused man’s aunt Tere Douglas.

Too distraught to speak outside court, his mother clutched a tissue and a photo of a young boy, presumably of her son as a child.

Two very different scenes, but both just as tragic.

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