Stephanie is the Rotorua Daily Post's education and lifestyle reporter.

Live updates: Taiaroa murder trial week 2

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George Taiaroa. PHOTO/SUPPLIED
George Taiaroa. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

4.40pm:
Albert Wall has taken the witness stand and is being questioned by Crown prosecutor Chris Macklin.

Mr Wall was travelling with Mr Nordstrom and Mr Hartley when they came across a blue vehicle travelling at speed.

Mr Wall described the driver as clean shaven, Maori, but fair skinned with a "stocky" build.

4.25pm:
Forestry contractor Wayne Nordstrom is the next witness to be called by the Crown.

Mr Nordstrom was travelling with Mr Hartley when they came across the Jeep Cherokee.

He said he knew it was a Cherokee because of the make's distinct grill.

When describing the driver, Mr Nordstrom said he could tell it was a pakeha man with "darkish" hair.

He said the vehicle was "exceptionally clean" which took them by surprise.

3.55pm:
Derek Hartley, a machine operator, has been called to the stand. Crown solicitor Amanda Gordon is questioning him.

He met a Jeep Cherokee on the road near State Highway 32 the afternoon of March 19, 2013. He saw it come around a corner at speed, starting to "fishtail" in the process.

He said the vehicle seemed out of place because it was "too tidy, quite straight".

Mr Hartley described the man as Polynesian or Maori in his 20s or 30s with dark, large sunglasses and short black hair.

After correcting the fishtail, the man raised his hand to his face in what Mr Hartley described as a "wave of shame", as though to say "sorry, bro".

Mr Hartley is now being cross-examined by Mr Temm.

3.05pm:
Detective Steven Dunn has been called to the stand. He was a team member in the investigation into George Taiaroa's murder and presented the photo montage to witness Corina Walker.

Mr Dunn has confirmed it was Winders Mrs Walker identified from the photo montage as the driver of a blue Jeep Cherokee that passed her on Tirohanga Rd.

He said her answer was not instantaneous, she "took some time to study the photos, maybe two or three minutes".

Mr Temm is now questioning Mr Dunn. He has asked Mr Dunn about a long videoed interview conducted with Winders and what he thought after that interview.

"After that interview were you satisfied Mr Winders was an important suspect, further still, were you satisfied Mr Winders was the 'appropriate' suspect?"

After a slight pause, Mr Dunn agreed.

Mr Temm went on to say it was following this interview that Mr Dunn took the photo montage to Mrs Walker.

Mr Dunn said his actions during the photo montage were not altered by his interview with Winders.

2.45pm:
The Crown has called Detective Gavin Mackay to the stand.

Mr Temm is now conducting his cross-examination.

He has questioned Mr Mackay about July 2, 2014 when [Mr Mackay] and a police photographer went with a firearm to Rotorua Towing and took some photos.

2.15pm:
High Court is back in session. Corina Walker has been recalled.

Winders' lawyer Jonathan Temm is continuing his questioning. Mr Temm has produced the photo montage Mrs Walker used to identify the driver of the blue Jeep Cherokee.

Mr Temm confirmed with Mrs Walker that the photo of the man she identified in the montage was "darker" than the others.

Crown prosecutor Chris Macklin is questioning Mrs Walker again.

Earlier:
The woman who locked eyes with the "crazy" driver of a blue Jeep Cherokee the day George Taiaroa was shot went on to identify him in a police photo montage, a court has heard.

Corina Walker, a dairy farmer from Taupo, has taken the witness stand in the trial of murder-accused Stratford man, Quinton Winders.

Winders is accused of shooting and killing Mr Taiaroa on March 19, 2013.

Mrs Walker told the court about her experience driving along Tirohanga Rd when a navy blue vehicle came up behind her, "appearing out of nowhere".

"I noticed the driver came up behind me really quick. I felt like he was really close, maybe two or three metres... It gave me a fright initially.

"He obviously wanted to pass in a hurry, he was moving backwards and forwards. When he did pass he cut back in very sharply. I remember thinking he was driving erratically, crazy.

"As he pulled up beside me we looked each other in the eye, he stared back... I was quite shaken up by it."

She said she recognised the vehicle as a Jeep Cherokee as it passed her.

Describing the driver's appearance, Mrs Walker said he was a white man with tanned skin wearing a black t-shirt. She said he had brown hair with a straight fringe, no tattoos and appeared to be cleanly shaven.

She said she remembered the driver's appearance clearly because she was shaken up when their eyes met.

Crown prosecutor Chris Macklin went on to question Mrs Walker about the photo montage police presented her with.

She could not remember when police approached her with the montage, but thought it was about two months after the incident.

"[Police] showed me the montage and one picture hit me... It hit me like a tonne of bricks. It was the face I had seen that day - to me it was the same person... I was certain."

During cross-examination by Winders' lawyer Jonathan Temm, Mrs Walker reiterated she "got a good staring" at the driver, describing him as "big-eyed, wired up".

Mr Temm questioned whether the windows were up or down in the passing vehicle and whether the tinting could have impacted how dark the driver's skin appeared.

"I never thought I was looking at a Maori person, he was pakeha with tan skin... I still see the situation in my head and I am sure in myself that the person [from the montage] was the person I saw."

Mrs Walker was adamant she received no assistance from Detective Steven Dunn when looking at the police photo montage.

Earlier Christopher Lenth was called to the stand. He was the driver of the vehicle involved in a minor crash with Winders and his father, Max Winders.

Mr Lenth relayed the events of March 12, 2013. When questioned by Mr Temm, Mr Lenth confirmed when the crash occurred, the stop sign was leaning against a ute parked on the side of the road. He said he had not noticed the stop sign until the last minute.

Mr Lenth said Winders and his father accepted blame for the crash and in his opinion were "just decent people".

Mr Temm reiterated, as with the other witnesses from the crash, that there was no animosity or aggression shown towards stop-go worker George Taiaroa.

The trial continues.

Earlier:

The murder trial of Quinton Winders, the man accused of shooting and killing stop-go worker George Taiaroa, has entered its second week.

Winders, 45, pleaded not guilty in December last year to the murder of Taiaroa, 65, who was shot dead while operating a stop-go sign at roadworks in Atiamuri, north of Taupo, in 2013.

Quinton Paul Winders PHOTO/FILE
Quinton Paul Winders PHOTO/FILE

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