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Australian Politicians/ Contacts
Sarah Cafferkey's killer Steven James Hunter has appealed against his life sentence
Evil killer Steven James Hunter is appealing his sentence of life without parole for the murder
of 22-year-old Bacchus Marsh woman Sarah Cafferkey.
Hunter's lawyers lodged papers in the Supreme Court on Wednesday.
The 48-year-old killer, who has a criminal career spanning 30 years, was sentenced to life
without parole last month over the November, 2012 murder.
Ms Cafferkey's mother Noelle Dickson said today she was angry about his appeal.
"My initial reaction was I was sick to the stomach," Ms Dickson said.
"I started crying, then I got angry and now I'm just about exhausted.
"I just can't believe it.
"I understand about this natural justice and stuff but he's a double murderer. He has had
no regard for the law his entire life."
Victorian Legal Aid represented Hunter in his Supreme Court plea. Ms Dickson said it would
be outrageous if taxpayers were expected to foot the bill for Hunter's appeal.
Hunter, of Bacchus Marsh, attacked Ms Cafferkey with a hammer and stabbed her 17 times in
a murder that Justice Kevin Bell described as callous, calculating, brutal, and "shocking
in its ferocity, especially given that Sarah was entirely defenceless".
Hunter then dumped her body in a bin.
He told police he "snapped'' during an argument after she became angry when she mistakenly thought
he called her a "junkie''.
Hunter, who once escaped from Pentridge Prison, had completed a parole period less than two
weeks before murdering Ms Cafferkey.
A double killer, Hunter has already served 13 years for the 1986 stabbing murder of
Moonee Ponds woman Jacqueline Mathews.
Hunter pleaded guilty to Ms Cafferkey's murder.
Forensic psychologist Professor James Ogloff told the court it was ``patently obvious'' Hunter
would remain a significant risk to the public.
Sarah Cafferkey's killer Steven James Hunter sentenced to life without parole
The evil killer who murdered Sarah Cafferkey just days after his parole ended will die in jail.
Steven James Hunter was today sentenced to life imprisonment with no parole over Ms Cafferkey’s brutal killing.
He joins a small list of Victoria's most notorious prisoners who will never be released. They
include Russell St bomber Stanley Taylor, sex killer Raymond Edmunds and serial killers Leslie Coombes and Peter Dupas.
But a woman who described herself as a close friend of Hunter says she will make sure he fights to be freed from jail.
Diane, who did not want to reveal her surname, said she had known Hunter his entire life and described him as “a very nice man”.
She sat alongside Hunter’s dad, Murray, as he was today sentenced to die in prison.
Outside court Diane said she would make sure Hunter appealed against the sentence.
“He’ll be appealing because I’ll make sure he does,” she said.
“He’s not a monster, the judge said he’s not a monster.”
Diane compared the sentence to that handed to Jill Meagher’s killer, Adrian Bayley, who was sentenced
to life with a minimum term of 35 years.
“Adrian Bayley got 35 years and he did horrendous, he was worse, he is an animal.
“Justice hasn’t been done today, justice has been taken from a man who is a very nice man, when you know him”.
Diane and Mr Hunter blamed drugs on the killing.
“I’m not saying he needs to have a chance, but he does need to live his elderly
life as a human being not a caged animal,” she said.
“When he’s 80 years old isn’t he going to be rehabilitated?”
Ms Cafferkey’s parents applauded what they described as a "courageous" decision and said justice had been served.
Sentencing Hunter, Justice Kevin Bell said he was "likely to remain powerful enough to represent
an ongoing threat to the community even in old age".
"Your murder of Sarah shows you have a propensity for violence from which the community, and especially
young women, need protection," he said.
"The crime which you committed was in the worst category of the most serious crime of murder.
"In my view your case, is therefore, exceptional."
Justice Bell said that while Hunter's crime was monstrous, he was not a monster.
He also said Hunter was not a psychopath but had only very slight chance of rehabilitation.
The 47-year-old, dressed in a black shirt and jeans, remained emotionless as Justice Bell delivered his sentence.
Outside court Noelle Dickson, Sarah’s mum, said she had faith in the justice system.
"Sarah was a beautiful young woman who had so much to live for. Bright, funny and caring," she said.
"Sarah was loved by everyone she crossed paths with and will be missed by us all.
"Today I stand before you in the knowledge that justice has been served for our beautiful daughter, niece, cousin and friend."
Ms Dickson said she would continue to fight for change in the adult parole system.
Adrian Cafferkey, Sarah’s dad, applauded Premier Denis Napthine's pledge to overhaul the system in the wake
of a parole report by former High Court Judge Ian Callinan.
"But he needs to rest assured, us along with all the other families, will be watching the timeline for
implementation very keenly," Mr Cafferkey said.
Justice Bell described Ms Cafferkey's unprovoked murder as callous, calculating and brutal.
He said Hunter's criminal career spanned 30 years, he had murdered for the first time aged 21, and
had spent most of his life in jail.
Dozens of Ms Cafferkey’s family and friends were in court to watch the sentence hearing.
Hunter’s estranged father, Murray, was one of just two people supporting him in court.
They sat together close to the prisoner’s dock and turned to look at him several times through the hearing.
The court heard Hunter did not know if his dad was still alive after becoming estranged from him in 2002.
Before that their relationship had been only sporadic.
Justice Bell said Hunter had endured a "highly deprived upbringing, characterised by physical abuse, neglect,
substance abuse and exposure to family violence".
"As a child, you were burnt with an iron and degraded for bed-wetting. In one terrible incident when you were
aged only eight years, your father locked the three children into a room while he tied your mother to a chair.
"You managed to get out of the room. Seeing your father put a shotgun into your mother’s mouth, you called your
grandparents for help.”
Hunter’s stepfather was also violent towards him.
Outside court Murray Hunter said told reporters his son’s sentence was excessive and said he had been failed by
the justice system.
Mr Hunter said his son had not been properly rehabilitated while serving his first prison sentence for murder.
Prosecutors had called for Hunter to be sentenced to a term of life without parole, saying he had lost his right to
ever be released.
But lawyers for Hunter had urged the court to impose a non-parole period, accepting that Hunter shouldn't be eligible
for release until he is an old man.
They say he had a right to a non-parole period.
Ms Cafferkey was bashed in the head with a hammer and stabbed up to 17 times on the night she died.
An argument had erupted between the 22-year-old and Hunter, a friend, at his Bacchus Marsh unit on November 20 last year.
"The stabbing was shocking in its ferocity, especially given that Sarah was entirely defenceless," Justice Bell said.
Hunter told police Ms Cafferkey became angry after mistakenly thinking he called her a "junkie".
He said during the argument he "snapped" after Ms Cafferkey struck him on the back. .
Hunter – who once escaped from Pentridge Prison - had completed his parole just nine days before murdering Ms Cafferkey.
It was his second frenzied stabbing slaying in a criminal career spanning more than two decades.
Hunter served a 13-year term for stabbing 18-year-old Moonee Ponds woman Jacqueline Mathews in 1986 after she rejected
The court heard Hunter and Ms Cafferkey's relationship had a strong drug connection and that Hunter saw himself as a
"father figure" to her.
They had met less than three months before Ms Cafferkey's killing through friends and while she was aware of his criminal
history the court heard it was not known if she knew he was a killer.
Justice Bell said Ms Cafferkey accepted Hunter as he was and the pair enjoyed partying together.
After killing Ms Cafferkey Hunter embarked on a cruel plan to coverup the crime.
He sent text messages to Ms Cafferkey's mobile phone, moved her body in his car and entombed her in a wheelie bin filled
with concrete and lime.
He had asked a friend to help hide Ms Cafferkey and had gone to Bunnings and bought products to help dispose of her body.
Ms Cafferkey's emotional parents looked directly at Hunter at a pre-sentence hearing last week as they told the court of
the pain he had caused them.
Ms Dickson broke down as she told Hunter that Sarah was not a piece of rubbish to be put in a wheelie bin.
Mr Cafferkey pointed directly at Hunter and said he wanted to know "how and why" Hunter was allowed to kill for a second time.
"My spirits are crushed. There are no lights at the end of our tunnel," he said.
"We have a life sentence. Our beautiful baby girl is gone".
During a record of interview following his arrest Hunter told police he remembered hitting Ms Cafferkey with a hammer
but couldn't remember stabbing her.
He said he couldn't explain why he had killed her.
"I don't understand why, I really don't understand why," he told police.
"I am nothing."
Hunter said he hoped to die in jail.
Herald Sun (21-8-2013)
Steven James Hunter pleads guilty to killing Sarah Cafferkey
Convicted killer Steven James Hunter has formally pleaded guilty to murdering Sarah Cafferkey.
Hunter appeared briefly at the Supreme Court this morning where he entered a formal plea to one charge of murder.
Dressed in prison greens, Hunter was flanked by two security guards and replied "guilty" when asked how he pleaded.
Hunter fatally stabbed the 22-year-old with repeated blows at his Bacchus Marsh address on November 10.
A suspected ice dealer, Hunter had argued with Ms Cafferkey before hitting her with a blunt instrument, possibly
a dumbbell, and then repeatedly stabbing her.
Post mortem results revealed Ms Cafferkey had been stabbed 19 times to the head, chest and abdomen.
After stabbing Ms Cafferkey, Hunter moved her body to Point Cook, and dumped it in a wheelie bin.
Ms Cafferkey's body was found by police on November 17, five days after she had been reported missing by her worried mum.
Her last hours were spent with her disgruntled ex-boyfriend, Chris Stewart, before she bought alcohol to visit Hunter.
The student and budding justice worker had no idea of Hunter's criminal history.
He served a 13-year term for stabbing 18-year-old Moonee Ponds woman Jacqueline Mathews in 1986.
Hunter was found in hiding three days after Ms Cafferkey's body was located.
He had been in hiding in Hawthorn when arrested by police.
Hunter was remanded to next appear before the Supreme Court on June 26.
Herald Sun (11-4-2013)
Rap sheet of Steven James Hunter revealed after pleading guilty to frenzied stabbing murder of Sarah Cafferkey
Steven James Hunter has twice claimed the lives of vibrant young women in the most brutal way.
His criminal past reveals a frightening history of violence, and thumbing his nose at the law by reoffending on parole.
The convicted killer has pleaded guilty to murdering Bacchus Marsh woman Sarah Cafferkey today.
Steven James Hunter, 47, who served a 13-years for stabbing 18-year-old Moonee Ponds woman Jacqueline Mathews in 1986, faces the prospect of spending the rest of his life in prison after entering a guilty plea this morning at Melbourne Magistrates Court.
Hunter – who once escaped from Pentridge Prison - had completed his parole just nine days before murdering Ms Cafferkey at his Bacchus Marsh unit on November 10.
STEVEN JAMES HUNTER - a disturbing profile
1983: Convicted of burglary, theft and criminal damage after throwing a
rock through a shop window and stealing a pair of gloves
October 1983: Convicted of assault and carrying a weapon and fined $800 after getting into a fight over a girl.
1984: Convicted of being unlawfully on the premises.
April 9, 1986: Stabbed to death Jacqueline Mathews, 18, after she rejected his advances.
February 25, 1988: Jailed for 16 years with minimum of 13 for the murder of Ms Mathews.
February 26, 1990: Escaped from Pentridge Prison and chased through the streets before being caught. Jailed for four months.
December 2000: Released on parole.
March 2002: Helped kidnap a man who he then tied, gagged and bashed. Parole cancelled.
May 2002: When police arrested him over the kidnapping they found “deal bags” of amphetamines.
July 2002: Re-paroled.
August 2003: Charges over the 2002 offences.
September 2004: Failed to appear at his court hearing.
October 2004: Arrested.
February 2005: Jailed for driving offences.
April 27, 2005: Jailed for at least four years and six months for theft, intentionally causing injury, false
imprisonment and drug trafficking.
June 21, 2006: Sentenced reduced by six months by Court of Appeal.
November 1, 2012: Parole period ended.
November 10, 2012: Fatally stabbed Sarah Cafferkey at his Bacchus Marsh home.
Herald Sun (27-3-2013)
Sarah Cafferkey didn't stand a chance against killer Steven James Hunter
Convicted killer Steven James Hunter's parole had expired just nine days before he murdered beautiful young Sarah Cafferkey.
In the days after her stabbing death last November, Hunter, 47 - who first murdered a co-worker in 1986 - attracted
little attention from police as he went about trying to conceal his crime, despite a tipoff about him.
Hunter pleaded guilty to murdering the Melbourne woman - his second frenzied stabbing slaying in a criminal career
spanning more than two decades.
Sarah's mother, Noelle Dickson, shook as she came face to face with the man who killed her only child.
And she is angry the justice system allowed a convicted killer, on parole over other offences, to be placed
in the small Bacchus Marsh community to kill again.
"I'm exhausted and feel sick to my stomach sitting so close to this man in the courtroom who brutally took
my only child's life," Ms Dickson said.
"As I look at him I don't understand, considering his past criminal history, how on Earth he was ever released or why.
"I want to know why he was released. That's all I kept thinking. How could this happen?"
Although Hunter pleaded guilty and is set to spend the rest of his life in prison, the early plea has not dulled the pain.
Ms Cafferkey's last hours were spent with her disgruntled ex-boyfriend, Chris Stewart, before she bought alcohol to visit Hunter.
The student and budding justice worker had no idea of Hunter's criminal history. He served a 13-year term for
stabbing 18-year-old Moonee Ponds woman Jacqueline Mathews in 1986.
Video shows Ms Cafferkey leaving the Foodworks where she bought alcohol and then driving her silver Astra to
Hunter's unit in Simpson St, where it is believed he had been placed by Loddon Mallee Housing Services.
Hunter, a suspected ice dealer, argued with Ms Cafferkey before hitting her with a blunt instrument, possibly a
dumbell, and then repeatedly stabbing her. The remorseless killer than tried to hide his crime by;
SENDING text messages from Ms Cafferkey's mobile phone.
MOVING her body in his car to a Point Cook property and entombing her in a wheelie bin filled with concrete and lime.
BUYING 20 litres of hydrochloric acid,
TELLING local police Ms Cafferkey had been at his house, leaving her with the keys.
Ms Cafferkey was officially reported missing on November 12 by her mother. A text message was sent to Hunter at
9.45pm to contact Bacchus Marsh police station.
In a call from Bacchus Marsh police he divulged Ms Cafferkey had been with him on November 10 at his unit,
they consumed alcohol, but he left about 5pm and left her the keys.
Hunter explained he had returned the next day and she was gone.
He gave police his new address in Point Cook, where he had just hid the body.
According to a police summary, police attended Hunter's Bacchus Marsh unit on November 14 and shone torches in the windows.
On November 15, Wyndham detectives attended the Point Cook property, but found no one home.
On November 17, crime scene examiners at the Bacchus Marsh unit found blood stains at the rear
of a sofa and a black leather jacket in the lounge room.
"As the forensic examination of Simpson St, Bacchus Marsh, continued, it became apparent that
a serious assault had occurred," the police summary said.
Police returned to Point Cook where the wheelie bin was seized and scanned for her body.
Hunter was picked up hiding in Hawthorn and charged.
During the police interview he admitted his crime - stating he knew Ms Cafferkey, they had argued and he killed her.
Hunter will next appear before the Supreme Court on April 11.
Herald Sun (27-3-2013)
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