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HomeNewsPaul John Conoley: Homeless man pleads guilty to murder of Steven Church

Paul John Conoley: Homeless man pleads guilty to murder of Steven Church

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A Queensland man has admitted to murdering a grandfather of eight during a violent and random street attack before leaving him to die in a garbage bin.

But in a sudden twist in Paul John Conoley’s arraignment on Friday morning, prosecutors revealed they would not proceed on a second unrelated murder charge alleged to have occurred a year before the fatal attack.

Conoley pleaded guilty to murdering Steven Church, 50, in April 2019 at an intersection in the Logan suburb of Woodridge, south of Brisbane.

He was also charged with murdering John Imber, 53, on the Gold Coast in 2017, but Crown prosecutor Mark Green said they would not proceed with the charge.

Supreme Court justice David Jackson said Conoley was discharged on the indictment.

Conoley wore a black suit and had his hair draping to his neck as he was escorted to the dock by corrective services.

Asked if he had anything to say in response to his guilty plea, he simply replied: “No, Your Honour.”

The Crown alleges Conoley, a homeless man from Beenleigh, fatally attacked Mr Church at the intersection of Defiance and North roads in Woodridge about 5am.

He is then alleged to have tried to dump Mr Church’s body in a wheelie bin before fleeing.

Mr Church died en route to hospital.

The pair were complete strangers and had never met.

The court was told practitioners needed a two-hour sentencing hearing in February.

Conoley will return to court on February 9.

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