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Queensland man jailed for nine years after beating his ex-girlfriend

Graeme Colin Evans punched north Queensland mum Leeann Lapham with such force he felt her skull give way.

Immediately afterwards, he went outside for a cigarette.

When he returned 20 minutes later to the Innisfail hotel room where the pair were staying with their three-week-old son, he realised she was dead.

The 43-year-old, who was 36 at the time, panicked.

Graeme Colin Evans punched north Queensland mum Leeann Lapham (pictured) with such force he felt her skull give way

After punching the mother (pictured), Evans went out for a smoke before coming back 20 minutes later to find her dead 

After punching the mother (pictured), Evans went out for a smoke before coming back 20 minutes later to find her dead 

He bundled Ms Lapham's body into a sleeping bag, put it in his car and drove it into bushland at the nearby Cowley Beach, dumping her clothes and naked body in different locations 

He bundled Ms Lapham’s body into a sleeping bag, put it in his car and drove it into bushland at the nearby Cowley Beach, dumping her clothes and naked body in different locations 

He bundled Ms Lapham’s body into a sleeping bag, put it in his car and drove it into bushland at the nearby Cowley Beach.

Her clothes and the sleeping bag were discarded in one location, while her naked body was dumped in another.

Evans appeared in the Townsville Supreme Court on Wednesday where he was sentenced to nine years’ jail for Ms Lapham’s manslaughter in 2010.

The court heard the 30-year-old mother became annoyed at Evans on April 19 of that year, after she arrived home to see an empty bacon packet and knife in the kitchen sink.

She came towards her partner with the two items, before swinging the knife in his direction and knocking the beer bottle out of his hand.

A fight ensued and the pair struggled until they fell on one of the beds.

Evans then proceeded to punch Ms Lapham repeatedly in the head.

The court heard the 30-year-old mother (pictured) became annoyed at Evans when she arrived home to see an empty bacon packet and knife in the kitchen sink, prompting the argument

The court heard the 30-year-old mother (pictured) became annoyed at Evans when she arrived home to see an empty bacon packet and knife in the kitchen sink, prompting the argument

Justice David North said the fight could only be described as a 'brutal bashing' over something as trivial as a bacon packet (pictured Ms Lapham)

Justice David North said the fight could only be described as a ‘brutal bashing’ over something as trivial as a bacon packet (pictured Ms Lapham)

Justice David North said the fight could only be described as a ‘brutal bashing’ over something as trivial as a bacon packet.

‘You took your time after you beat her senseless, then gathered her body and disposed of her naked, depriving her of the opportunity of a funeral and a burial,’ he said.

Justice North recalled how Evans had told a psychologist he felt Ms Lapham’s ‘skull give way’ when he punched her.

However, he also found Evans was remorseful and accepted blame for what happened.

He would usually be eligible for parole after he had served 50 per cent of his sentence, but Justice North said he deserved some credit for taking police to where he dumped her body.

As a result, he said Evans would be eligible for parole after he had served four years. 

The court found Evans remorseful of his actions and as a result he will be eligible for parole after serving four years of his sentence

The court found Evans remorseful of his actions and as a result he will be eligible for parole after serving four years of his sentence



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