A detective has told a court in Rotorua how James Te Hiko sobbed that he had killed the only person in the world he loved.
"He looked up at the sky saying, 'Where are you my baby? Come to me, my baby'," Tokoroa Detective Constable Daniel Williams said in the High Court at Rotorua where Te Hiko is being tried for murder.
The 44-year-old scaffolder has denied murdering Queenie Karaka, generally known as Nina Thompson, at Atiamuri some time in April last year.
Although accepting Te Hiko caused Thompson's death, his defence lawyer argues it was manslaughter not murder.
The Crown accuses Te Hiko of attacking Thompson after the pair had been drinking and arguing at his home on the Ongaroto marae.
Williams, the last Crown witness, said Te Hiko became emotional in the Tokoroa police station.
"[He was] crying and repeatedly saying, 'Oh my poor darling, what did you do, what did you do? I am so sorry my love'," Williams testified.
Te Hiko swore and called himself a "dumb f***er".
Evidence from Te Hiko's brother, Rani, who is in hospital, was also read to the court.
It told how he had gone to his brother's home after hearing his mother talking to him on the phone in a way he had never heard her speak before. At the house, his brother told him Thompson had been mucking around on him and he couldn't stop when he hit her.
When Rani Ms Thompson lying on a bed, he was unable to recognise her, her face was so big, bruised and her eyes blackened.
Earlier forensic pathologist Dr Simon Stables told the court how cuts on Thompson's ear and below her eyebrow and hairline looked like the kind a boxer might inflict.
Thompson, who suffered a fractured cheek bone and severe brain injuries, was likely to have been further beaten with a pipe, Stables said.
Thompson received at least 70 blows to her body when she was attacked, some likely to have been inflicted by a pipe, others by kicking or stomping.
Te Hiko's lawyer, Harry Edward, said his client would give evidence tomorrow.