'Ludicrous' tale of spear attack on cop

·3-min read

A chat with police officers believed to be thugs before attacking them with a spear was a tale that should be swiftly rejected, a Sydney jury has been told.

Giving closing submissions in Rory James Constantino's trial on Monday, crown prosecutor Leon Apostle urged the jury to use common sense about what actually happened when police attended the accused's southwest Sydney home on June 11, 2019.

The officers arrived at the Sadleir house at around 6.40am with an arrest warrant for Constantino's father Ricky over a firearm offence.

Constantino claims he did not know the two men dressed in plain clothes were police. He says he was acting in self-defence against men who busted down his door and chased him through the house.

Mr Apostle called this story "absolute nonsense", saying the 30-year-old would not have opened the door to his family home and then merely chatted to those outside if he thought they were a threat.

"People don't open doors to thugs, people don't converse with thugs and tell them that dad is asleep," Mr Apostle told the jury.

"That is a ludicrous suggestion and quite frankly, ladies and gentlemen, it's an insult to your intelligence."

Constantino faces one charge of recklessly wounding Senior Constable Jacob Vella by stabbing him in the neck with the makeshift bladed spear.

The Downing Centre District Court jury was ordered to find Constantino not guilty of two further counts of wounding Sen Const Vella to prevent the lawful arrest of his father and of recklessly wounding the officer with the intention of causing actual bodily harm.

Despite his claims he thought his home was being invaded, Constantino knew the two men were police but was being combative, aggressive and defiant in trying to prevent them getting to his father, the jury heard.

"The accused, on the crown case, was angry. He'd dug his heels in," Mr Apostle said.

The other officer who visited the home, Senior Constable Grant Koschel gave evidence he had shown his badge twice and that, despite being in plain clothes, had his firearm and handcuffs clearly displayed on his waist.

After seeing Ricky Constantino armed with a baseball bat inside the premises, the police officer drew his gun, ordering him to put down the weapon and did not see the moment his partner was stabbed.

Sen Const Vella said he saw the door being slammed on his partner's foot, and yelled out "it's the police," before kicking the door down.

With his pistol, handcuffs and pepper spray clearly visible on his waist, he then chased Rory Constantino through the house, mistakenly thinking he was pursuing the father who was resisting arrest, the jury was told.

The officer said he saw Constantino run straight to his room, grab the spear from behind the doorway, turn 180 degrees and lunge straight at his face.

"It wasn't until Senior Constable Vella, on his evidence, lent over in an attempt to handcuff the accused that he noticed blood coming from his neck," Mr Apostle said.

With blood trickling onto the floor and soaking the shirt he was wearing, the officer called out for his partner, who helped him leave the property and provided medical assistance outside until the ambulance and more police arrived.

The trial continues on Tuesday.