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'Elvish' sword a decoy in NT murder: crown

AAP logoAAP 15/11/2016 Lucy Hughes Jones

An obsessed husband tried to send police down "the wrong path" by planting a bloodied ceremonial sword next to his estranged wife's dead body, a court has heard.

Northern Territory man Darren Ashley is accused of stabbing his ex-wife Kirsty Ashley 27 times in 2012 because he was enraged she had left him.

Prosecutor David Morters said Mrs Ashley was on the phone to her step daughter weeks after she walked out on her husband of 16 years when the call was cut short by a "blood-curdling scream".

Wearing gloves, the accused allegedly entered Mrs Ashley's brother's house in Alice Springs where she was staying at the time, and used a number of knives to kill her in a "frenzied attack".

The court heard Ashley then planted a ceremonial "elvish" sword beside the victim's body and "dipped it in a pool of blood to send police down the wrong path".

Senior Constable Jasen Machacek showed the large blood-stained weapon to the NT Supreme Court while giving evidence on Tuesday.

A number of items the forensic investigator found at the crime scene were also tendered, including photos of clumps of brown hair in the victim's bloodied hands.

Sen Const Machacek said he discovered in a nearby drain about six broken knives and a pair of tongs, which the crown alleges were dumped by Ashley.

Mr Morters said Ashley also hid the 35-year-old victim's phone, burnt his clothes, and told police a bikie gang may have been responsible for her death.

Ashley allegedly assaulted and stalked his estranged wife in the weeks leading up to the killing because he believed she was having an affair.

Mr Morters said Ashley "became obsessed" and sent his ex-partner 297 texts and phone calls over a two-week period, before she took out a domestic violence order against him.

He repeatedly professed his undying love for Mrs Ashley, but she rebuffed his attempts to reconcile the relationship which made him "intensely angry", the prosecution said.

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