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Daley family confronts alleged killer

AAP logoAAP 1/08/2016 By Sophie Tarr

Grief-stricken relatives of a NSW woman allegedly killed during a night of sexual violence have confronted the last men to see her alive.

Lynette "Norma" Daley was 33 when she was allegedly brutalised on Ten Mile Beach late on Australia Day 2011, or in the early hours of the next morning.

But it was not until this year - after the man who claimed to be her boyfriend, Adrian Attwater, and his mate Paul Eric Maris, were charged, then allowed to walk, and then grilled at a coronial inquiry - that Department of Public Prosecutions director Lloyd Babb SC announced plans for a trial.

On Tuesday, dozens of members of Ms Daley's family travelled from as far north as Casino to see Attwater and Maris face Grafton Local Court for the first time.

One man muttered the words "let them hang" from the public gallery during the brief hearing.

But anger boiled over into violence as Attwater left the courthouse, struggling to shield his face from the cameras as members of Ms Daley's family grabbed at his shirt and the dead woman's sister screamed "Why?"

In dramatic and distressing scenes, Tina Daley chased the 41-year-old Attwater out onto the road before becoming overwhelmed and collapsing onto the asphalt, where she lay until an ambulance arrived.

Ms Daley's mother, Thelma Davis, appeared anguished and had to be helped away.

She had arrived at court carrying red, yellow and black balloons - the colours of the Aboriginal flag - bearing the words "Justice for Norma".

Norma was the pseudonym given to Ms Daley during a 2014 inquest that concluded Attwater and Maris had a case to answer.

In the moments before the melee broke out, Mrs Davis told AAP she had waited five years already and was prepared to wait longer for justice.

"She was the most loving person. Kind-hearted. You couldn't get a kinder person," she said of her late daughter.

Maris was escorted into the nearby police station before escaping into his car, to the jeers of the crowd.

A short time earlier, Attwater's solicitor Martin Bernhaut asked for a court order banning any publication of his client's home address, citing safety concerns.

"It's a matter involving significant publicity, significant public sentiment," Mr Bernhaut said.

Court documents allege Attwater killed Ms Daley between 8pm on January 26, 2011 and 7am the next day, in an act of domestic violence-related manslaughter.

Maris allegedly aided him after the fact.

Both men were charged with sexual assault in company.

Ms Daley's aunt, Denise Purcell, said she and her family had been held hostage over their fight for justice.

"We're the ones who've been imprisoned these last five years. It's about time we turned it around," she said.

But she hoped Tuesday's brief court hearing - despite the emotional toll it had taken - could signal the beginnings of closure.

"The family is still grieving ... and hoping today that the healing process can really begin," Ms Purcell said.

The two accused men are on bail and will not be required to face court when their case returns on September 6.

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