A drunk man who became enraged when prevented from driving home in central west NSW did not mean to kill a friend he pierced through the ribs with a barbecue fork, a jury has been told.
Richard "Ricky" Eggins died within one or two minutes when the two-pronged fork pierced his aorta in the early hours of March 2, 2019.
Darryle Tailford , 28, has pleaded not guilty to murder but guilty to manslaughter, but the Crown has not accepted this.
Crown prosecutor Liam Shaw argued in its opening address to the NSW Supreme Court that despite Tailford's highly intoxicated state he was capable of making decisions and intended to inflict serious bodily harm on Mr Eggins.
Earlier in the evening, the two men were out drinking cocktails with friends to celebrate Michael Eggins' birthday at Hotel Canobolas in Orange.
CCTV footage shows Tailford downed at least nine mixed drinks before becoming so intoxicated he vomited outside, Mr Shaw said.
Tailford went to a North Orange home and was later joined by the party but about 3am he tried to drive his car parked in the garage.
He was stopped by Richard and Michael Eggins who punched his eye through an open window.
This prompted a "quite upset" Tailford to go into the kitchen where he found his weapon.
Michael Eggins later said Tailford came back angry "with a look in his eye" causing him to jump over a car in the garage to flee.
"This left Richard Eggins in the garage with the accused," Mr Shaw said on Tuesday.
Three people standing outside never saw the physical action where the fork was used to penetrate the chest.
An autopsy later found his body was penetrated about 60 millimetres with a mild to moderate degree of force.
Tailford immediately left for another friend's home and began banging on the door, and moving about erratically.
"He was crying, he was hysterical, throwing his arms around and talking very fast with snot dripping out of his nose."
At the time he was unaware Ricky Eggins was very close to death.
Over the next 24 hours, Tailford visited various friends and at one point texted Mr Eggins' mother saying he felt alone and scared and that he was sorry.
She texted back saying he should hand himself in to the police which he did that afternoon.
Defence lawyer Eric Wilson argued the jury won't be satisfied that Tailford intended to cause Richard Eggins serious bodily injury.
How the fork - an everyday piece of equipment used for cooking a roast or holding a barbecued item - caused the injury and resulting death was really important, he said.
Another issue for the jury was the effect of alcohol on all involved that evening.
"The accused admits he held an implement ... maybe in a threatening way," Mr Wilson said.
"What was his intention ... that is crucial in this case."
The trial is estimated to last up to three weeks before Justice Stephen Rothman.''
Australian Associated Press