SA murder 'vile and senseless', court told

Tim Dornin
Leslie Talbot's lawyer has told an Adelaide court he behaved like an "aggressive, abusive git"

A South Australian was stomped on, stabbed and left to die in a pool of blood with a fruitcake on his head in a "vile and senseless" murder, a court has been told.

David Saunders, 59, was attacked at a home at Hayborough, south of Adelaide, in February last year, suffering at least six blows to the head and two stab wounds.

Leslie Kevin James Talbot, 51, was found guilty of murder with Mr Saunders' grieving daughter telling the Supreme Court on Tuesday that the world now seems a more "dark and evil" place.

Stephanie Saunders said attending the trial of her father's killer was the most difficult thing she had ever endured.

"Hearing how my dad died on that evening has broken me," Ms Saunders said in a victim impact statement read to the court.

"Breathing the same air as the people who committed such a vile and senseless crime sent my stomach sick."

Ms Saunders said her only feelings towards Mr Talbot were anger and hate.

"You violently killed my dad, you stomped on him, you strangled him, you stabbed him and you beat him with objects from around the room.

"He lay motionless and you still continued to stomp and beat him, letting him bleed out from his ears with a fruitcake on his head.

"To add to that you sat back drinking, thinking you were a big man, boasting how you stomped on the c***."

Talbot had admitted manslaughter before the trial, but his guilty plea was not accepted by prosecutors.

His lawyer, Bill Boucaut SC, told the jury that he had behaved like an "aggressive, abusive git".

But he argued during the trial that the fruitcake was evidence the killing was not intentional, but rather an attempt to humiliate Mr Saunders.

"Are you going to do that if you knew he was dead? You wouldn't waste your time," Mr Boucaut told the court.

Another man, Eldon Wayne Crouch, 48, also went to trial for the killing but was found not guilty of both murder and manslaughter.

Defence counsel on Tuesday asked for a non-parole period of about 20 years for Talbot.

But Justice David Lovell described the attack on Mr Saunders as nasty and prolonged.

"This attack must have gone on for some minutes," the judge said.

He will sentence Talbot on October 19.