There’s been a major development in the suspicious death of Gold Coast mother Kelly Wilkinson, with a second man now charged with murder.
A 25-year-old Pimpama man was arrested by Gold Coast detectives at his workplace in Coomera just after 9.00am this morning.
He has since been charged with murder (Domestic Violence Offence).
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Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Detective Inspector Chris Ahearn said police allege the man assisted Ms Wilkinson’s estranged husband Brian Earl Johnston with committing the murder.
“I can say that he was involved in transporting Kelly’s estranged husband to her house on the morning of her murder and had some involvement in procuring items like fuel that were used to perpetrate her murder,” Detective Insp Ahearn said.
“Prior to the murder, they did stop at a fuel station and fuel was obtained in a jerry can”.
While the man did not actually commit the final fatal act that claimed Kelly’s life, Detective Inspector Ahearn said he has been charged with murder because he allegedly “aided” the killing.
“These acts were preparatory too, he aided Kelly’s estranged husband with committing a number of acts that helped him to commit the murder.
“So in Queensland law you can be held culpable for murder in those circumstances.”
Detective Inspector Ahearn said police allege the man, who has been described as a friend of Ms Wilkinson’s estranged husband, “knew what the end result was going to be”.
“This male person was aware of his intent to murder Ms Wilkinson before he did, and it will be alleged that he did some acts that assisted Kelly’s estranged husband in committing her murder,” Detective Inspector Ahearn said.
He was initially taken into custody at the time of Kelly’s death, where police say he “gave a version of events that subsequent investigations have been able to discount”.
“CCTV is one component of the investigation that we have relied on and will be used in the prosecution in this matter,” Detective Inspector Ahearn said.
He confirmed Ms Wilkinson’s family has been informed of today’s breakthrough.
“They have been made aware of today’s arrest and whilst it gives them some comfort, they have got a Mother, Sister, Auntie and Daughter who won’t be coming home,” Detective Insp Ahearn said.
“So they are grieving, and whilst it might give them some comfort, Kelly won’t be coming home to them, so it’s a tragic circumstance.
The man has been refused bail and will appear in the Southport Magistrates Court tomorrow.
Kelly Wilkinson, 27, was allegedly set on fire and killed in the backyard of her Arundel home on April 20 this year.
Her estranged husband Brian Earl Johnston remains behind bars charged with her murder.
Police investigations into the incident remain ongoing.