ACT News

Save
Print

Queanbeyan woman to fight allegations she hid shotgun used in Watson murder

A Queanbeyan woman accused of stashing a gun used in a fatal shooting in Canberra's north has pleaded not guilty. 

Deanne Pikula, 26, was charged with being an accessory after the fact to murder in relation to the killing of Eden Waugh on November 3 last year. 

Police found Mr Waugh, 37, dead with a single gunshot wound to his chest when they were called to the Watson unit he shared with his partner shortly before 8pm. 

No-one has yet been charged with his murder. 

Ms Pikula was arrested in Karabar and extradited to the ACT earlier this month, where her application for bail was refused. 

She appeared via audiovisual link in the ACT Magistrates Court again on Tuesday, when her defence lawyer entered a plea of not guilty on her behalf.

Advertisement

Prosecutors said it was a "a major matter" and the brief of evidence to be prepared would be "significant".

The case returns for a pre-hearing mention on June 13. 

A police statement of facts, tendered during Ms Pikula's first court appearance, alleged the accused had hidden the gun for her two brothers, Jason Pikula-Carroll, 21, and Tavake Lee Pikula, 31, after the killing. 

Police said they had spoken to the two men, who were already in jail in separate NSW prisons for other alleged offences, but neither had yet been charged in relation to Mr Waugh's death.

Court documents allege Waugh and his partner had a falling out with Mr Pikula-Carroll that turned violent after one of his associates was turned away from the couple's unit when demanding drugs the morning of September 22 last year.

That incident triggered a string of threats from Mr Pikula-Carroll, who allegedly stormed the unit with two other men, armed with a shotgun, machete and a metal bar, soon after.

The men demanded drugs and cash before they slashed Waugh's arm with the knife and bolted.

Mr Waugh and his partner reported the incident. Police allege the two brothers sought retribution when they covered their faces and broke into the couple's unit with a crowbar on November 3. 

There was a struggle and Mr Waugh was fatally shot in the chest at close range with a 12-gauge sawn-off shotgun.

Court documents said the brothers then fled to Deanne Pikula's​ house in Karabar, where they left the gun. She allegedly disposed of the weapon, which has not been found.

Police say they intercepted phone conversations between the accused and Mr Pikula-Carroll where she allegedly told her brother she had put the gun "somewhere very safe".

He replied: "Good, I'm going to need it when I get out."

Ms Pikula is then alleged to have said: "I don't know about that, it's a bit too safe."

She was remanded in custody.