Queensland police admitted that Kelly Wilkinson, the mother of three, was at fault, allegedly murdered and set on fire by her former partner on Tuesday morning, after she twice visited a police station to complain that he met the conditions of violated a protection order.
In a major mea culpa, Assistant Commissioner Brian Codd and Gold Coast Superintendent Rhys Wildman led the media to announce an internal review of the tragic case and admit that they had failed to protect Ms. Wilkinson.
“It’s a failure in the end,” said Codd. ‘A woman has died. She was murdered. She has dealt with the system somewhere, and we have not been able to prevent that. ‘
Kelly Wilkinson and Brian Johnston on their wedding day. He had been arrested earlier in April
QPS Assistant Commissioner Brian Codd said the service had failed, Ms Wilkinson
Forensic officers during their lengthy investigation of Arundel’s property
An important aspect of the review will be why Johnston was released on bail after being arrested on April 11 for what were described as ‘serious crimes’ allegedly committed in February. Police bail is a decision made by a police officer rather than a magistrate.
Superintendent Wildman revealed that police had contacted Kelly Wilkinson after a personal protection order was issued following a domestic violence incident that police were aware of on March 29.
She then visited Southport Police Station twice more, complaining that Johnston had not adhered to the terms of the warrant.
Codd defended the decision, saying police ruled Johnston had not violated his terms.
‘Contact has been made [by Ms Wilkinson] Following suggestions, there were violations of the conditions and these were reviewed and assessed and it was determined that the scenario was consistent with the conditions. ‘
Ms. Wilkinson had also contacted Gold Coast domestic violence agencies to seek help because she feared the development of the situation.
Kelly Wilkinson and Brian Johnstone lived for some time in his home state of Ohio, USA.
Police and SES search the street where Kelly Wilkinson and her children lived
A local Arundel resident, Louise Christie, paid her respect on the spot on Wednesday
“I know there was contact with one of the domestic and family violence entities on the Gold Coast around April 13,” said Assistant Commissioner Codd. “An agreement has been made with our Domestic and Family Violence Unit in the Gold Coast District.
I can’t go into the explicit details, but it was to emphasize on Kelly’s behalf concerns about understanding the process as to why the [alleged] perpetrator was not in custody. ‘
Johnston’s attorney, Chris Hannay, told the media on Wednesday that he met Johnston on Sunday, less than 48 hours before he allegedly attacked and murdered Ms. Wilkinson.
“On Sunday I got instructions from him on some other pretty serious cases he has been accused of, and haven’t spoken to him since,” said Mr. Hannay.
He said Johnston did not appear troubled or agitated at the weekend conference.
“Obviously, no one expected this to happen … everyone thought they were just chugging like a normal process.”
Kelly Wilkinson pictured with one of her three children during her stay in the US.
Tuesday’s alleged attack came seven years after the couple shared photos of their wedding surrounded by their loved ones.
Other photos showed Mr. Johnston holding one of their children next to Mrs. Wilkinson while on vacation in the US, and Mrs. Wilkinson smiling while on a trip to Niagara Falls.
Mrs. Wilkinson’s mother, Karen, who died in a tragic double blow to the family in February, had also shared photos on Facebook of her daughter and young family visiting his native Ohio.
She and husband Reg owned the Spikes Court house the couple lived in before the relationship broke up.
A GoFundMe campaign to raise money for Kelly’s children had raised more than $ 122,000 on Thursday afternoon, more than double the original $ 50,000 goal.
Kelly Wilkinson and Brian Johnston dance in a wedding day photo