No way Constable Matthew Hunt could have survived gunshot wounds, court hears

An expert’s told the High Court in Auckland there’s no way Constable Matthew Hunt could have survived the gunshot injuries he suffered during what should have been a routine traffic stop last year.

Source: 1 NEWS

Pathologist Dr Simon Stables, who was responsible for the officer’s post-mortem examination said all bar one bullet caused “fatal” injuries to Constable Hunt.

“There is no way these could have been treated,” he said.

As the damage to Constable Hunt was described several of his family members, including his sister, stood up and filed out of the courtroom.

Stables was the first witness to testify this morning, as the trial for Eli Epiha enters its second week.

The 25-year-old’s admitted murdering Constable Hunt, but denies attempting to kill his partner Constable David Goldfinch.

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Also on trial is Natalie Bracken, 31, who denies being an accessory after the fact of murder.

Stables today told the court one of the bullets fired at Constable Hunt caused a grazing, non-fatal wound to the left side of his chest.

The three other shots were to his lower back, right buttock and inside of his right thigh.

“All of those were going from his back to his front and in an upwards trajectory,” Stables said.

He said there was “extensive damage”, detailing broken pelvic and lower back bones.

The jury also heard that the key arteries running to Constable Hunt’s legs were “lacerated or shredded”.

“Essentially, what we're looking at is internal injuries,” Stables said.

He also ran through the possible positions Constable Hunt could have been in when he was shot, using wooden doll to demonstrate.

Stables said the course of the bullets suggest the officer wasn’t standing upright when he was hit.

One possibility was that Constable Hunt had fallen forward after a “grazing” and “non-fatal” gunshot wound to his chest.

“It’s also possible he’s leaning forward slightly as he runs."

Stables said - and the defence emphasised – the positions were just “assumptions”, based on the trajectory of the bullets.

Under cross-examination Stables also agreed it was not possible to know in which order the bullets were fired.

The trial is ongoing.