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Woman guilty of caravan park manslaughter
Woman guilty of caravan park manslaughter

A woman who drove her car into a caravan park owner while in a rage over an argument about table mats has been found guilty of manslaughter.

Katie Walkerley, 46, has this week faced trial over the death of Rita Addenbrooke, who died from catastrophic head injuries at the Kingsway Tourist park in February last year.

Ms Walkerley had been accused of deliberately driving her Toyota at Ms Addenbrooke, who suffered from multiple sclerosis and needed to use a walking stick.

A jury was told how Ms Walkerley had become enraged at an earlier dinner party after a guest started removing table mats which had been stuck down with tape.

After storming off and getting into her car, Ms Walkerley was driving through the park playing loud music, when Ms Addenbrooke stepped in front of the car and placed her hands on the bonnet in an effort to stop her.

Instead, prosecutors allege she kept driving forward, forcing Mrs Addenbrooke onto the bonnet and then off it.

The impact of her head on the ground as she fell off the car caused major head and brain injures and she died two days later, the court heard.

Ms Walkerley then drove over a speed bump and through an entry boom gate, causing damage to the car, the jury heard.

After six hours deliberation, the jury convicted Ms Walkerley of manslaughter.

Ms Walkerley had denied that charge, saying the incident was a tragic accident and not deliberate.

In an interview with police, she said Mrs Addenbrooke had appeared out the dark like "the walking dead" and she had become petrified after two more park residents began shouting at her to stop the car.

She will be sentenced later this year.

The West Australian

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