‘Get rid of the bong’: Man recalls reaction to finding 3 yr-old daughter dead

Kyhesha-Lee Joughin, 3, was found dead in March 2013

A Brisbane man who discovered his three-year-old daughter dead in his lounge room says he told his housemate to get rid of a bong before calling triple-0.

Matthew Lee Williamson is facing a contested sentencing hearing in the Supreme Court after he pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Kyhesha-Lee Joughin, but said he never hurt her.

He has instead admitted to not acting to save her life when she was gravely ill and suffering from numerous injuries.

Kyhesha-Lee died in March 2013 at a unit in Petrie, north of Brisbane, and was found to have suffered internal bleeding, cuts and bruises.

Williamson said his housemate Christopher Kent woke him when the girl was “stiff” and lying on the floor.

He said Kent then decided to leave.

“I started to dial and before I pressed call, that’s when he said he was leaving so I said, ‘If you’re going anywhere, can you get rid of this [bong] with you’,” Williamson said.

“Then I gave that to him and I proceeded to call triple-0.”

Prosecutor Phil McCarthy asked him: “So your first thoughts that go through your head when your daughter’s on the ground dead is that police might get you for having a bong?”

Williamson said he wanted to ditch the bong before calling police about Kyhesha-Lee

Williamson replied: “That’s correct.”

In the weeks before Kyhesha-Lee’s death, Williamson said he saw blood coming from her vaginal region but did not report it to authorities because he “didn’t think anything of it at the time”.

Williamson denied sexually abusing her but said he never told anyone about her injuries until police interviewed him after her death.

He said his daughter accused Kent of digitally penetrating her, but that he still did not make a report because he was fearful of his housemate.

“He was always intimidating,” Williamson said.

He said, when Kyhesha-Lee had facial bruising and a cut ear, he did not take her to a doctor because Kent told him not to.

In the final days of her life, Williamson said Kyhesha-Lee was vomiting green fluid but he did not seek medical treatment or tell his family.

Defence barrister Michael Copley asked Williamson why he did nothing.
Williamson replied: “I was afraid I’d lose her … to welfare.”

Recreation of the place Kyhesha-Lee’s body was found, using a soft toy

Kent, who received a suspended sentence after pleading guilty to Kyhesha-Lee’s manslaughter, also denied harming the girl.

He told the court on Wednesday Williamson would regularly “smack her and slap her”.

Williamson admitted using a rope to tie his bed to the toddler’s door handle to keep her door shut, but said he only did so to prevent her sneaking out to the kitchen and spilling milk on the floor.

Forensic pathologist Dr Nathan Milne said there was evidence the girl had suffered vaginal lacerations and internal injuries, a cut ear and multiple bruises to her face and arms.

Williamson buried his head in his hands and cried as photos of the Kyhesha-Lee’s injuries were shown in the courtroom.

The hearing before Justice Roslyn Atkinson is continuing.

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Source: ABC

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