THE jury in the trial of a Tamworth man accused of killing his girlfriend – whose body has never been found – will resume deliberations next week.
The jury of six men and six women were locked away all of Friday deliberating on whether or not Troy Jason Ruttley murdered his partner, Johann Morgan, in Tamworth in August, 2015.
Justice Anthony Payne sent the jury home shortly before 4pm after they sent a note saying they had yet to reach a verdict, following close to seven hours of deliberations.
Thank you all again for the commitment you’ve already shown to this case.
“Thank you all again for the commitment you’ve already shown to this case,” he told the panel, before excusing them for the weekend.
“The case is now in your hands.”
Justice Payne wished them a “pleasant weekend” and told them they will resume deliberations on Monday morning.
The jury retired on Thursday shortly before lunch to start their deliberations.
More than 40 witnesses were called by the Crown in the seven-day trial including Ms Morgan's children, brothers and sisters, Ruttley's children, extended family members as well as the last people who the Crown allege saw Ms Morgan alive on August 9, 2015.
The Crown alleges Ruttley killed her and then dragged her body outside of the Cole Rd home and used his Mitsubishi Magna to dispose of the body which has never been found.
Ruttley admits that he torched the car on August 10 at a quarry on the Oxley Highway, 17km outside of Tamworth.
He says he burnt the car because it was playing up, he wouldn't have received any money from the wreckers for it and none of the family wanted it.
The Crown claims Ruttley torched the car to destroy evidence that linked him to the disappearance and murder of his on-off again partner.
Defence barrister Anita Betts only called the accused in her case, who gave evidence about his movements on the days in question but denied killing or hurting Ms Morgan.