A TRAINED martial arts expert has admitted to killing a former Orange resident after punching him to the ground in a road rage incident on the Central Coast in 2013.
Kaine Geoffrey Jones was due to face trial for the murder of Graeme Wilton in Newcastle Supreme Court on Monday before prosecutors accepted a guilty plea to the lesser charge of manslaughter.
In doing so, Jones admitted killing Mr Wilton and will remain behind bars until his sentencing proceedings are heard on Wednesday.
His 56-year-old victim had been on a two-year holiday around Australia with his wife Marlene when they checked into a caravan park at Mannering Park on December 8, 2013.
Four days later on December 12, Mr Wilton went for a walk on his own after 7.30pm.
Witnesses told police they heard a car come to a screeching halt in the tourist’s path soon after.
Behind the wheel was Muay Thay boxer Jones, who had already punched another man in the car park of a Central Coast shopping centre less than six months before.
According to witnesses Mr Wilton banged his palms on the bonnet of the utility before walking along the driver’s side of the car, speaking in the direction of Jones.
The driver got out of the vehicle and punched Mr Wilton to the head, causing him to fall back and hit his head on the bitumen.
Jones then did a burnout within metres of Mr Wilton’s motionless body which was lying in the middle of the road, and took off at speed.
Mr Wilton regained consciousness and was taken to Wyong Hospital before being transferred to Royal North Shore Hospital’s intensive care unit where he was placed in an induced coma and underwent two surgeries to reduce the swelling on his brain.
He died on February 10 the following year.
Court documents revealed Jones had told police that Mr Wilton “ran out in front of the road, in the middle of the road, and I tried to get around him, but he side-stepped in front of me, so I locked the car up and he slammed his hands on the bonnet”.
In the documents tendered when he was committed for trial, Jones also said Mr Wilton had assaulted him before Jones got out of the car and punched Mr Wilton.
Less than six months before the attack a man needed dental work to re-align his teeth after he was punched repeatedly by Jones in the car park of Westfield Tuggerah.