Poisoning murderer Wendie-Sue Dent wants her conviction overturned – and is backing her bid to clear her name with an engagement ring and Viagra.
Poisoning murderer Wendie-Sue Dent wants her conviction overturned – and is backing her bid to clear her name with an engagement ring and Viagra.

‘Ring and Viagra prove I’m not guilty’, murderer claims

Poisoning murderer Wendie-Sue Dent says an engagement ring and a Viagra prescription prove she and her victim were deeply in love - and that she did not kill him for his estate.

On Thursday, Dent asked the Court of Criminal Appeal to overturn her murder conviction, and also renewed her attack upon David Lawrence's family.

Marie Shaw QC, for Dent, said the jury that convicted her client could not, in legal terms, have truly been satisfied of her guilt.

She said that was because prosecutors had failed to dispute and contest witnesses who claimed Dent and Mr Lawrence had a "harmonious and happy" relationship.

Poisoning murderer Wendie-Sue Dent. Picture: AAP Image/Sam Wundke
Poisoning murderer Wendie-Sue Dent. Picture: AAP Image/Sam Wundke

"It's fair to say there were two quite different camps... there was the Lawrence family who, plainly, had an interest of their own in relation to the estate... there was real venom in their attitude," she said.

"In the second camp were witnesses who speak to the obviously affectionate relationship between Dent and Mr Lawrence.

"Immediately proximate to his death they had, as a couple, gone to a doctor to seek assistance (and) Viagra was prescribed... he purchased an engagement ring for her.

"This was uncontested evidence (at trial)... the prosecution's arguments were speculative and inconsistent with this couple's unchanging relationship."

Dent, 61, of Dapto in NSW, was found guilty at trial of having murdered Mr Lawrence in December 2015.

Jurors found she had poisoned him with her medication - including 20, 100mg tablets of morphine - to claim his $300,000 estate.

She also falsified paperwork, including a will, to be named his sole beneficiary and told lies in an attempt to undermine the tight-knit Lawrence family.

 

Victim David Lawrence. Source: SA Police
Victim David Lawrence. Source: SA Police

Dent filed an appeal against her conviction in May - last month, the Lawrences broke their five-year silence over the case in a damning, jointly-written victim impact statement.

They told Dent she was a selfish, remorseless, outlandish liar whose life is "a waste", saying she deserves only a "meaningless existence" in jail.

On Thursday, Ms Shaw said the prosecution case had not addressed the evidence of witnesses who swore Dent and Mr Lawrence were happy.

"The relationship was harmonious and happy... there are a number of unchallenged witnesses who say they were engaged and planning to be married," she said.

"They also say it was not Dent who initiated the will but Mr Lawrence, because the couple wanted to travel and he was concerned about the dangers of the roads.

"Those who put a different perspective on the relationship, and did not know they were engaged, are the Lawrence family."

*For 24-hour domestic violence support call the national hotline 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or MensLine on 1800 600 636.    

 

Originally published as 'Ring and Viagra prove I'm not guilty', murderer claims



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