Murder trial of David Best for allegedly stabbing squatter Roy Erwin to death fails to return verdict


The jury in the trial of a man accused of murdering a squatter in a Mandurah shed because he was angry about him stealing his cigarette butts has been discharged after being unable to reach a verdict.

David Morris Best, 58, had been on trial in the Supreme Court for the past week over the fatal stabbing of 23-year-old Roy Erwin in February last year.

Mr Erwin was stabbed in the chest as he slept in the shed on a vacant property that adjointed Mr Best’s home.

It was alleged that sometime before the stabbing, Mr Best had sent a text message to his son, saying he had “carried out his own bit of justice” after catching someone in his backyard again.

Roy Erwin was 23 and sleeping rough when he died in Mandurah.(Supplied: Facebook)

Prosecutor Paul Usher described the case as one “where anger and being pissed off had taken hold of a person seemingly living a normal life”.

In the text message, Mr Best had said he had called an ambulance, but the court heard one was never called and Mr Erwin’s body was not found until two days later.

Confession recorded in police interview, prosecution says

Mr Usher said in video-recorded interviews with police, Mr Best told them “I did it”.

“I was annoyed he was in my backyard. I went and stabbed him when he was lying on the mattress. I only did it once.”

A long shot of a suburban street with white, unmarked police vans parked outside a house and officers walking around.
Police attended the scene where Mr Erwin’s body was found in Mandurah.(ABC News)

Mr Best pleaded not guilty to the murder charge, with his lawyer, Lisa Roche, saying her client denied intending to kill or cause serious injury to Mr Erwin.

She said it was “nonsense” to suggest that a drunken text message sent by her client could prove that he had the necessary intent.

The jury deliberated for around 13 hours before it was discharged, after telling Justice Michael Corboy it was unable to reach a unanimous verdict.

Mr Best now faces the prospect of a retrial.

He was remanded in custody until his next court appearance later this month, when a date for a new trial may be set.



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‘Slow death’ of ATAR as school leavers head for jobs ‘cliff’


Digital micro-credentialing and the “slow death” of ATAR are the future of education, according to a new review, but research shows COVID-era school leavers will be worse off.

A new report into school leavers’ transition into work or further study has recommended the ATAR “cannot continue to dominate the education experience”, as the Australian education system adjusts to the longer-term effects of the COVID-19 crisis.

The chancellor of Western Sydney University, Peter Shergold, chaired a review into pathways for senior secondary students, which also found vocational education pathways had traditionally been perceived as “second class”.

“I think ATAR is, in a real sense, distorting our senior secondary education system,” Professor Shergold 7.30 as part of a new series on the education and jobs of Australia in 2025.

“I’m not calling — the panel is not calling — for the execution of ATAR. It’s [a] slow death over the next five years.

“What are we doing about the 70 per cent of students at school who are not using ATAR to get to university?”

‘We’re facing a cliff’

Principal of Beenleigh State High School Matt O’Hanlon with student Ambrosia Jackson.(ABC News)

The debate over the quality of school-leaver pathways and vocational training could not be more timely, as this year’s seniors leave high school during the first recession since 1991.

“If you go back to the group who graduated from school during the global financial crisis, in fact they had been disadvantaged, they are still playing catch-up,” Professor Shergold said.

“It can take a number of years for events like this to wash through the system.”

Research has shown the long-term effect on recession-era school leavers, says EY chief economist Jo Masters.

“Economic research shows that it impacts your income for 10 years, if you’re unlucky enough to start [your career] in a recession,” Ms Masters told 7.30.

Jan Owen, co-convenor of Learning Creates Australia — a collaboration of philanthropic and education-sector stakeholders attempting to transform the system — said the promise that education makes about leading to careers and things like home ownership was “broken at the moment for a generation of young people”.

“There’s a scarring effect of events like COVID-19 on young people’s lives, which will continue for potentially decades,” Ms Owen said.

She said that with hundreds of thousands of students soon to finish school and higher education, “we’re facing a cliff even this year”.

“It’s very, very serious because if those young people can’t find a path of some kind into further learning, into jobs, into apprenticeships, into internships, we need to open up all the opportunities as far as we can.”

Digital learning and micro-credentialing the future

A teenage girl wearing a school uniform.
Ambrosia Jackson, 17, hopes to start her own cafe when she leaves school.(ABC News: Christopher Gillette)

Amid the gloomy outlook, there are ideas to help make education purpose fit for Australia in 2025.

Matt O’Hanlon is the principal of Beenleigh State High School in South East Queensland’s Logan City, an area with high youth unemployment.

“We’ve only got about 24 per cent of students who actually go for a university pathway. The rest of our students are looking for jobs,” Mr O’Hanlon told 7.30.

One of his pupils Ambrosia Jackson, 17, aspires to open a cafe when she leaves school.

“What worries me about the future is TAFE and stuff. I just worry that I won’t complete it. But fingers crossed. I have hope,” she said.

She is one of a handful of students in an Australia-wide trial of a digital micro-credentialing platform called Credly, facilitated by the University of Melbourne.

A man wears a shirt and tie.
School principal Matt O’Hanlon says micro-credentialing “recognises the 21st century skills”.(ABC News: Christopher Gillette)

It provides her with “digital badges” for competencies she has achieved in specific skills, such as barista skills, but also attributes like teamwork and communication skills that are not shown on traditional school leavers’ certificates.

It can give prospective employers a clearer portrait of her competencies and attributes.

It is all part of a greater emphasis on how students, both high school and above, leverage the digital space to showcase their learning and access short, sharp competencies in specific skills.

“A revolution is going on in terms of the education that people can gain, particularly online, and not just in Australia, around the world,” Professor Shergold said.

“Whatever the future holds, it’s going to require higher levels of digital literacy. And that has got to be a focus if we are going to be serious about education being the platform for equal opportunity in Australia.”

Watch part 1 of this special series on 7.30 tonight.



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Victorians brace for more deaths despite falling case numbers, Sydney’s Tangara School cluster grows, Australia death toll at 313


“Thank god, the government has allowed dine-in; we were managing through take-away, but now business will improve,” said Sher Khan, owner of a tea stall in a bustling area of Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city.

The government allowed a partial resumption of commercial activities in May. Despite reopening the remaining businesses, it urged people to take precautions including wearing masks.

In Lahore’s Bazar Mozang, shops were packed and few people wore masks.

At a clothing and cosmetics shop, Nadeem Sheikh said he was reluctant to turn away customers who did not adhere to the rules for fear of the financial loss.

At a packed salon in the southwestern city of Quetta, Muhammad Usman was happy to shed locks of hair that had grown unruly over the months.

Pointing to his long hair and laughing, Usman said people had started to think he was an ascetic hermit and had approached him with charity, asking him to pray for them.

Gyms opened in the city of Peshawar, with customers relieved they no longer had to train at home.

“I gained 20 kilogram because of the closure of gyms,” said Najeeb Ullah Achakzai, 27. “That destroyed all my personality… My marriage was postponed due to my becoming overweight.”

Pakistanis return to gyms in Peshawar, Pakistan on August 10.Credit:AP



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FAKE ALERT: No IPS officer Vinay Tiwari has not joined CBI to probe Sushant Singh Rajput’s death


CLAIM
Several social media posts are claiming that the Bihar IPS officer Vinay Om Tiwari, who was quarantined a few days back by the Municipal corporation of Greater Mumbai, after he landed in financial capital to probe actor Sushant Singh Rajput’s death has now been transferred to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The posts claim that he will now join the team probing Rajput’s death.

TRUTH
IPS officer Vinay Tiwari has not been transferred to CBI.
VERIFICATION AND METHODOLOGY
Times Fact Check got in touch with Tiwari who rubbished such claims.
“There is no truth in such claims. I have categorically denied them. Even some tweets with these claims have been removed,” Tiwari told Times Fact Check.
Tiwari also put out a tweet to refute such claims.

VERDICT
Times Fact Check has found the claims of IPS officer Vinay Tiwari being transferred to the CBI to probe Sushant Singh Rajput’s death to be false.





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17 die, 394 infected on Victoria’s deadliest day, NSW schools close after positive cases, Australia death toll at 295


Zoe Eilbeck, her husband Guy and sons Cam, 13, and Max, 8, sold their Frenchs Forest home in 2016, flew to Greece and purchased a 40-foot yacht in Croatia for a literal seachange. They later welcomed Pip, then a puppy, aboard.

In December 2018, they crossed the Atlantic from the Canary Islands to Barbados then sailed the east coast of the US. They were tied up in Key West in March planning a Pacific crossing back home when COVID-19 disrupted their plans.

Pip, the sea dog who had an incredible journey to get almost home.

The Eilbecks sailed from Key West to South Carolina, where they abandoned ship to fly home. As it would take time to organise the necessary paperwork to bring Pip back to Australia, they put out a call on social media for people to look after her in the meantime.

Ellen Steinberg, who lives in Hillsborough, North Carolina, fostered Pip for most of her stay in the US.

Last month Pip flew to Auckland via Los Angeles before reaching Melbourne on July 24. She spent 10 days in a Mickleham quarantine facility and should have flown on to Sydney on Tuesday but that flight was cancelled. She then stayed with Mrs Eilbeck’s brother in West Brunswick.

“We were going to drive down and pick her up because she had already done four flights, poor little dog,” Mrs Eilbeck said.

However, the closure of the border between Victoria and NSW prevented this.

Mr Eilbeck said: “I can’t believe we’ve managed to get her all the way across America on the kindness of strangers only for her to get stuck in Melbourne.”

Pip is booked on a flight to Sydney for Monday night. Let’s hope this family is reunited tonight.

Pip pictured with Cam, Zoe, Max and Guy Eilbeck.

Pip pictured with Cam, Zoe, Max and Guy Eilbeck.



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Wretch 32 on ninth anniversary of Mark Duggan’s death: ‘It feels like there’s no progression’


Rapper Wretch 32 – whose father was tasered by police inside his home in April – was among hundreds of protestors who gathered outside Tottenham police station in North London today demanding racial justice.

The protest was called on the ninth anniversary of the death of Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old black man who was shot by a police officer – sparking riots across the capital and beyond.

We managed to catch up with Wretch and began by asking him whether or not he thinks things have got better nine years on.



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Thousands evacuated and death toll rises to 26 in South Korea’s longest monsoon season in seven years


At minimum 26 individuals have died immediately after 46 days of large rains in South Korea, with the country’s longest monsoon in seven yrs triggering a lot more flooding, landslides and evacuations.

Virtually 5000 people today had been evacuated as of Saturday, according to Ministry of the Inside and Protection details, as rains battered the southern aspect of the Korean peninsula.

10 people today are lacking.

A village space are flooded because of to heavy rain in Gurye, South Korea

YONHAP

About 100 metres of levee collapsed at the Seomjin River in the southern edge of the peninsula on Saturday and flooded the region, an formal at the South Jeolla province stated, with about 1900 persons evacuated in the province which include about 500 from around the river.

The country’s forestry agency has lifted landslide warnings to its highest level in every single location other than the holiday island of Jeju.

Five properties have been buried in a landslide on Friday from a mountain behind a village in Gokseong, South Jeolla province, killing 5 persons.

A few people today have been rescued.

The town of Seoul warned men and women to stay away from basements, valleys and rivers as further torrential rains ended up predicted on Saturday night.

South Korea’s longest monsoon on history was 49 days in 2013. Present-day weather conditions forecasts forecast that this year’s monsoon may possibly very last for a longer period.

In neighbouring North Korea, condition media Korean Central Broadcasting also warned of further large rains in locations now hit by floods, in accordance to Yonhap.

A general aerial view of a village that was devastated by a landslide the previous day,  in the southwestern county of Gokseong, South Korea

A common aerial look at of a village that was devastated by a landslide the preceding working day, in the southwestern county of Gokseong, South Korea

YNA



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Jordan Petaia out of Waratahs match against the Reds after sudden death of father


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While the Reds would not confirm the news, Petaia paid tribute to his last father on Instagram.

“These last few days I’ve been trying to get away from it,” Petaia wrote. “I can’t seem to keep the tears away. I ain’t ever felt pain like this. I hate feeling like this. I still can’t believe what’s happened. Your heart and mind were so pure. So selfless and caring yet so tough. You helped give us kids every opportunity at life. I wish you could’ve seen what I had planned for our lives. I’m going to miss that infectious smile and laugh everyday. God’s gained another real one. I’ll love and miss you forever Dad.”

Rebels centre Matt Toomua also spoke on behalf of the Petaias.

Tielu Petaia and Toomua’s father, Ieru, were very close friends, a friendship that extended to their sons and other children.

“On behalf of the Petaia family and extended family, thank you to everyone who’s given their support, both teams and individuals. This is a very hard time for us,” Toomua said.

“Tielu was loved by many and all the guys knew him as the Uncle who was always downstairs at the hotel after games and greeting everyone. He was very loved. The family wishes to thank the Reds and Rugby Australia for their support and care.

“Thank you and please bear with us while we go through this tough time for the family.”

Petaia announced himself on the world stage last year at the Rugby World Cup, where he debuted as a 19-year-old.

He started at outside-centre for the Wallabies in their quarter-final loss to England and has been earmarked as a future star of Australian rugby.

Petaia was extremely close with his father, who travelled to Japan for the World Cup. The pair were pictured together after Petaia played in his first Test against Uruguay in Oita.

Three Reds players have lost their fathers in recent times, with Lukhan Salakaia-Loto and former Red Izack Rodda all suffering family heartbreak.

It comes as the Waratahs also were forced to make a late shuffle to their starting side on Friday following the withdrawal of captain Rob Simmons due to a rib injury he picked up against the Rebels a fortnight ago.

Tom Staniforth comes into the second row, while Jed Holloway takes a spot on the bench.

Michael Hooper will captain NSW for the first time this year after standing down as captain before the season got under way.

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