Fears that Kiwi jailed in Australia could be serial killer
THE investigation into a former Wellington man found guilty of murder in Australia this week sparked inquiries from police into unsolved killings in New Zealand.
Daniel Kelsall was convicted on Wednesday at the Supreme Court in Australia of murdering Morgan Huxley, 31, in September 2013.
At the time Kelsall was 22 years old and living in Sydney.
According to Sydney's Daily Telegraph, the savagery of the murder - Mr Huxley was stabbed 28 times in the neck and chest - and other concerning behaviour from Kelsall prompted local officers to cross-check any unsolved murders around the time Kelsall was living in New Zealand.
Police feared Kelsall, who moved to Sydney in 2012 and had a history of depression, may have been a serial killer.
The Telegraph also visited some of the former apprentice chef's acquaintances in Wellington, who described Kelsall as a loner with a penetrating stare.
His Sydney victim, Mr Huxley, was found by his flatmate Jean Redmond after she heard strange noises in the night in their flat.
He was lying in his bedroom doorway, the floor soaked through with blood. Ms Redmond realised later his pants were down below his waist.
During the police investigation, officers also found a history of internet searches for ghoulish autopsy images and animated child porn on Kelsall's computer, the Telegraph reported.
It also emerged two other men came forward with evidence of confrontations with Kelsall after Mr Huxley's killing.
One of the men said Kelsall jumped out from behind a bush when he was having a cigarette outside a block of units.
Child abuse images
More than a year before Kelsall stabbed Mr Huxley to death he had visions of killing and said "going to jail depended on whether or not he wanted to get caught".
As a jury found him guilty of murder on Wednesday, he came face to face with the full reality of what that means.
Kelsall will not be going home to his parents for a very long time, if ever.
Speaking after the verdict, his ex-girlfriend Jessica Hall said the businessman's life "had been stolen by a worthless psychopath".
"An inspiring, generous and loving young man, Morgan was beginning to make his way in the world," she said.
The family and friends who wore yellow roses - signifying Mr Huxley's favourite colour - were in tears as they hugged and kissed one another.
It can now be revealed Kelsall is also facing child pornography charges and is due to return to the local court on those matters next month.
The jury also didn't know he had given three separate versions of what happened the night he stabbed Mr Huxley at least 20 times in his Neutral Bay bedroom in the early hours of September 8, 2013.
In the first, which was given to police on September 24, 2013 he said he had only seen Mr Huxley at an ATM.
But days later, he called up the detectives saying, "I wasn't telling the entire truth."
In a conversation deemed inadmissible at trial, Detective Senior Sergeant Mark Dukes said Kelsall told him: "I started talking to [Mr Huxley] and he was like, upset and depressed, so I said to him, `can I cheer you up?'"
He said Mr Huxley fell asleep during a sex act, so Kelsall left his flat.
"When I was leaving there was a woman coming towards his unit and she saw me coming out."
"She saw me coming out and I think that's why he got murdered."
Kelsall told another version at his trial this week, saying he was having a sexual encounter with Mr Huxley when an intruder or intruders burst in and hit him over the head.
Terrified, he ran.
During his trial, the jury heard Kelsall had been captured on CCTV footage seemingly trying to catch up to a barefoot and intoxicated Mr Huxley outside The Oaks Hotel at 1.30am.
Kelsall's DNA was found on Mr Huxley's penis and his fingerprint on the bedroom's doorframe.
Mr Huxley's blood was spattered on the shoulder bag Kelsall was carrying that night and showed "amateurish" signs of being washed off.
Then there was "the key" to all of it - what crown prosecutor Peter McGrath SC later called "the prophecy".
The defence pushed hard for the evidence not to be admitted at trial but was ultimately unsuccessful.
As a result, the jury heard how in 2012 Kelsall told psychiatrist Matthew Boulton about having "intrusive thoughts" about stabbing "a random".
"He had no idea why he thought those kind of things and his going to jail depended on whether or not he wanted to get caught," Dr Boulton said.
As he began his cross examination, Mr McGrath looked straight at Kelsall.
Slowly and meticulously he worked through Kelsall's evidence, pointing out inconsistencies and using his own words against him.
"Was he [Mr Huxley] a random?" Mr McGrath asked.
Kelsall explained that Mr Huxley "was a random like any stranger is a random ... like the lottery is random".
Kelsall will return for a sentence hearing for the murder charge on April 29.