Kurt Bayer is a Herald reporter based in Christchurch

Winz shootings trial: 10 key points

Russell John Tully has today been found guilty of murdering two Ashburton Work and Income workers.

A jury took less than six hours to establish that 49-year-old Tully was the masked gunman who stormed the Ashburton Winz centre on September 1, 2014 and shot dead receptionist Peggy Noble, 67, and case manager Susan Leigh Cleveland, 55.

Winz shootings: Russell John Tully found guilty

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Here are 10 key points from the trial, that ended in the High Court at Christchurch today:

• The 49-year-old accused was not in court for most of the trial, including jury selection and arraignment.

• Identification of the masked gunman responsible for the shootings quickly emerged as key to the Crown's case.

• Winz staff described Tully as a demanding, manipulative and intimidating client trespassed for his behaviour towards them.

• The Crown said Tully labelled his possessions with distinctive 'inX' stickers. The Crown said one was on a spent shotgun cartridge found at the murder scene.

• Local man David Cooze, who witnessed Peg Noble being fatally shot at close range, challenged the fleeing gunman, causing him to leave behind a bike helmet.

• A DNA expert who analysed bike helmet sample cited "extremely strong" scientific evidence linking it to Tully.

• Tully didn't spend a whole day in the courtroom until day eight of the trial.

• The Crown says evidence that lone masked gunman is Tully is "overwhelming".

• Counsel effectively representing Tully, James Rapley, said features of the Crown case had not been satisfactorily answered and some points raised uncertainty.

• The jury of four men and seven women retired to consider their verdicts late yesterday. After being sent home for the night they returned at 3:30pm today to deliver a guilty verdict.

- NZ Herald

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