A Sydney real estate agent accused of attacking a woman with a samurai sword has applied to have his case heard only by a judge because the jury might turn against him, he said. attorney told the court.
Carl Adon Howard, 45, is set to go on trial next month for allegedly attacking two women at his Annandale home after taking Valium, Viagra, cocaine and alcohol in February 2021.
The former principal of Ray White Balmain has pleaded guilty to two counts.
In January, he also pleaded not guilty to one count of intent to murder and causing serious bodily harm and another count of intent to cause serious bodily harm.
He will face a seven-day trial next month.
Police allege Howard hit a 29-year-old friend with a samurai sword when he tried to intervene after hitting the woman in the head.
The court had previously heard that Howard allegedly mixed a cocktail of substances including Valium, Viagra, cocaine and alcohol on the night of the incident.
Howard did not appear in court on Thursday after barrister Michael Burke applied to face a judge-only trial rather than a jury trial.
Burke described the case as a “horror story”, referring to the crime scene photos that were to be submitted during the trial.
He argued that jurors would have considerable sympathy for petitioners and a degree of animosity toward Mr. Howard.
Burke said in court that the facts of the case were largely undisputed, but there was some dispute as to whether Howard had the necessary intent to be convicted of the crimes he was acquitted of.
“He’s the villain in this story, and there’s no debate about that,” Burke said.
The Crown’s prosecutor’s office has opposed a request for a judge-only trial with Justice Leonie Flannery and will communicate her decision on the matter next week.
Howard is scheduled to appear on trial beginning November 15.
https://thewest.com.au/news/twist-in-sydney-sword-attack-case-as-real-estate-agent-asks-for-judge-alone-trial-c-8538537 Sydney sword attack case twist as real estate agent seeks judge-only trial