Using a tea towel to soak up the blood, Kellie Barton knew Joel Frew had been hurt as she drove him to hospital.
But Ms Barton told Brisbane Supreme Court it was a "complete shock" when she found out Mr Frew had died soon after she had dropped him off.
Tyler Joseph Kelleher, 33, has pleaded not guilty to murder after Mr Frew was stabbed with a 20cm blade and died soon after being left at the hospital in March 2019.
CCTV footage of the moment the 42-year-old is knifed in the abdomen outside a unit in Brisbane's south soon after arriving at the Wishart residence has been shown to the jury.
Ms Barton lived at the unit with her partner Ryan Powell, but was not present during the stabbing.
However, she told the court she knew Mr Frew was hurt when she arrived at the apartment soon afterwards.
"I could hear a commotion going on. Joel was standing there holding his stomach saying 'it hurts' - he was in pain," she said on Wednesday.
She took a tea towel for his wound and drove him to the hospital, the court heard.
Ms Barton said after a half-hour wait Mr Frew received a hospital bed and she left.
"It was awful watching," she said of the wait.
Barely 90 minutes later Mr Frew was declared dead at the hospital.
There was so much blood in the tea towel that some spilt on the unit entrance when Ms Barton returned and she had tried to clean it up.
"I didn't want blood everywhere," she told the court.
Ms Barton said she was still surprised to learn Mr Frew had passed away after being picked up by police.
An investigation quickly led police to the Wishart unit after the manner in which Ms Barton dropped off Mr Frew drew their attention, the court heard.
After police surveillance of the apartment, officers pulled over Ms Barton and Mr Powell in their car after 1am - about two hours after Mr Frew had been left at the hospital.
Ms Barton and Mr Powell were not charged in relation to Mr Frew's death.
Mr Frew had gone to the apartment that evening after being confronted about an earlier incident, the jury heard.
Ms Barton said a friend of Mr Powell had brought three men to the Wishart unit and "ripped them off" by stealing drugs.
Ms Barton, Mr Powell and two others including Kelleher tried to find out who was responsible, the court heard.
They discovered Mr Frew was Facebook friends with the three men, Ms Barton said.
After they arrived at his residence, the Crown alleges Mr Frew was knocked to the ground and punches were thrown.
Ms Barton said they left with Mr Frew's phone to see if he had been in contact with the three men.
Mr Frew later went to the Wishart unit seeking his phone's return and was stabbed by Kelleher, the court heard.
Ms Barton on Wednesday did not wish to claim privilege against self incrimination when repeatedly asked by Justice Sean Cooper.
The trial continues.