John Edwards kept machete under bed and threatened to murder ex, inquest hears


John Edwards kept a large machete under his bed and made annual threats to murder a former partner for removing his previous children from him, an inquest has heard. Key points:Olga Edwards’s lawyer said Jennifer Edwards felt she was being stalked by her dadHe said Edwards made threats to kill a former partner because she took his children awayCourt orders in 2016 made the teenagers spend time with their father each weekend, against their wishes The extent of the 68-year-old’s anger issues, propensity for stalking and violence was revealed today by a barrister who represented his estranged wife Olga Edwards during an acrimonious divorce.Edwards shot dead his 15-year-old son Jack and 13-year-old daughter Jennifer in July 2018 after his relationships with them and their mother deteriorated.He later turned the gun on himself.Barrister Peter Fowler today told the inquest a Family Court order made in December 2016 required the teenagers to spend three hours with their father each Saturday despite “strong wishes not to see him”. Jack and Jennifer Edwards did not want any contact with their father.(ABC News: supplied)Jennifer was particularly frightened of Edwards, the court heard, because he began to show up unexpectedly when he separated from Ms Edwards.He was also physically violent towards Jack.In February 2018 final parenting orders granted Ms Edwards sole responsibility for Jennifer and no further contact orders were made for either child.Mr Fowler told the court he had “no doubt” if Ms Edwards had known her former partner had been granted multiple gun licences, she would have taken further steps to protect her children.In an affidavit justifying her concerns to the Family Court, Ms Edwards once said John Edwards made threats to kill a former partner on the anniversary of the death of one of his children to that woman.”He made verbal threats to her he would kill [the child’s] mother because she had taken the children away from him,” Mr Fowler said.”That’s something Olga heard once a year throughout the relationship. That bore on her mind.”Edwards had also conceded, during evidence to the Family Court, that he kept a large machete under his bed, Mr Fowler said.Family and domestic violence support services:As he was cross-examined during an AVO case, Edwards once said: “In any case, I know where you live”.In affidavits to court he also showed knowledge of how Jennifer got to school.”All of that led to a conclusion on her part that she was being stalked by him,” Mr Fowler said.Much of the inquest has been focused on the question of how Edwards came to be granted multiple gun licences despite a long history of domestic violence.The day before the murders, Edwards drove to the St Marys Pistol Club, where he was a member, and retrieved two guns he then used to kill his children after tracking Jennifer’s bus trip home to West Pennant Hills.Olga Edwards took her own life five months later.The inquest continues.

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