Australia CHARLISE MUTTEN: Crown v Justin Stein for 2022 murder of 9-year-old step-daughter *TRIAL IN PROGRESS*

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Missing nine-year-old girl was holidaying in the Blue Mountains, search continues​

Police are continuing an extensive search for a missing nine-year-old girl who was holidaying in the NSW Blue Mountains.

Charlise Mutten, 9, was reported missing from a Mt Wilson property at about 8.20am on Friday and has reportedly been missing since Thursday.

Acting Superintendent John Nelson said Charlise is originally from Queensland and has been holidaying with her family in Mt Wilson over the school break.


Superintendent Nelson said Mt Wilson is a large area to search and police will use all resources possible to try and find the girl.

"The Mt Wilson area is a small community surrounded by bushland and some rugged bushland," he said.

The search restarted at first light with police holding grave concerns for the girl's welfare.

Crews looked in tents and bins for any sign of the child yesterday.


Officers are investigating all possibilities in the search for Charlise.

"She's a nine-year-old girl and she's missing we're here to pull out every stop that we can," Superintendent Nelson said.

"We're not discounting any scenario at this stage."


A woman was comforted by ambulance officers at the search centre before being taken to a Katoomba hospital.

Police are appealing for help from the public and have sent out geo-targeting messages.

Her parents' house has also been searched and is under police guard.

Superintendent Nelson said it is a "traumatic" experience for the family.

A car was seized in Penrith by police yesterday.

9News understands the homicide squad has been called in to assist local detectives.


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Media - CHARLISE MUTTEN: Missing from Mt. Wilson, NSW since 13 Jan 2022 - Age 9
 
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EXCLUSIVE: Harrowing moment the mother of murdered girl Charlise Mutten 'ran screaming down a corridor' when she heard on the NEWS her daughter died from a gunshot wound - and sobbed about being pregnant with the alleged killer's baby​

A resident has recalled the distressing moment she heard Kallista Mutten screaming and crying in the corridor of a western Sydney unit block after discovering the shocking details of how her nine-year-old daughter died.

The woman, who asked not to be named, was at home on Tuesday when she heard a neighbour crying out in distress.

'I heard her yelling and crying...she was saying "I just found out my daughter was killed by a gun shot",' the neighbour said.


'She was saying police never told her how her daughter actually died...until it was on the news,' the neighbour said.

Ms Mutten only moved into the building this week following a lengthy stint in hospital under medical supervision after she suffered an 'episode' in the hours after reporting Charlise missing.

The charity-run building houses single parents, pregnant women and vulnerable people needing urgent temporary accommodation.

The neighbour said she then heard another woman in the building comfort Ms Mutten, who then tearfully revealed she was pregnant.

'I heard her say she's pregnant,' the neighbour said.

Ms Mutten was then spoken to by caretakers in the building, before going back inside her unit.

Detectives confirmed Ms Mutten is being treated as a witness in her daughter's tragic death, and had provided a lengthy statement.



Stein was arrested in the hours after the young girl's body was discovered, where he was staying with a mate in a block of 20 flats in Sydney's Surry Hills.

The complex is strewn with furniture - and a series of bizarre handwritten notes are displayed on residents' front doors.

Jason Tucker said Stein had not seemed stressed when he arrived at his home after Charlise's death, but told him he wanted to stay for a few days.

'Justin's never got a bad thing to say, he hasn't got a bad bone in his body,' Mr Tucker said.

He said Stein's stay at the housing block, w was uneventful until police arrived to arrest him last Tuesday night.

When officers stormed through Mr Tucker's front door to arrest Stein, it was 'scary' and 'alarming', he said.

But the drama was quickly over.

Stein was placed in handcuffs without commotion before asking his friend to call his mother to tell her to arrange a lawyer.
 

Kallista Mutten makes statement to NSW Police about the hours leading up to Charlise's disappearance in Blue Mountains​

Charlise Mutten's mother believed what her fiance, now accused killer, told her about the whereabouts of her daughter before she suspected something was wrong.

Kallista Mutten reportedly gave a statement to detectives last week saying she spoke with Justin Stein on January 13 - the day he allegedly stuffed the nine-year-old's body inside a plastic barrel and drove around Sydney before dumping it by the Colo River in the Blue Mountains.

Ms Mutten said Stein explained why Charlise was not on the 31-year-old's family's sprawling Mt Wilson property after she left her in his care only days earlier while she was staying at a caravan park 80 kilometres away.

While she initially believed Stein, the reportedly pregnant mother became suspicious early the next morning on January 14 before she raised the alarm with authorities.

"He gave a story about where the kid was and she believed him, then later on she got concerned and reports her missing," a police source told The Daily Telegraph.
So what did he say I wonder?
 
Investigators believe the schoolgirl was killed at Stein’s family property after Ms Mutten dropped Charlise off while she stayed at a caravan park 80 kilometres away.

It has been reported Ms Mutten and her daughter, who lives with her grandparents in Coolangatta in Queensland, were staying between to caravan park and the celebrity-favourite wedding venue.


From above article. It could be correct and it could be just the minor things that some media (not saying this one is necessarily) do not think important to check. So she dropped the girl off and went back and stayed at the caravan park becase it next said she and her daughter were staying between the park and the venue. It might not seem like much but why? If they are staying between the two, she didn't stay this time? I guess like it or not they were fiances and likely(?) living together normally and his watching her was a normal occurrence(?) or was it(?)... Still, why... Why couldn't she keep her and why did she need him to watch her. Not for a party, she is pregnant. Was she sick? If she was sick, she wouldn't drive her over an hour, wouldn't he come get her? This was planned to a degree if she dropped her off.

Ms Mutten said Stein explained why Charlise was not on the 31-year-old's family's sprawling Mt Wilson property after she left her in his care only days earlier while she was staying at a caravan park 80 kilometres away.

While she initially believed Stein, the reportedly pregnant mother became suspicious early the next morning on January 14 before she raised the alarm with authorities.


So she gave only a barebones explanation of she believed him, which we wondered, but is also a typical expected explanation and probably she did, not really wondering about that. But no more is offered, why? And WHY was she there or needed to be with him and why was it days before she did find she wasn't there, ask him, believe him and then report the next morning? And the days before that? She didn't talk to her or attempt to?

She isn't offering much. No explanation of where she was all of the same days, why she needed a "sitter", why when she only had two weeks with this child to begin with, she elected to give her up for a number of days and not see her. Did the mother work? I guess I never considered this. Did she have the two weeks off for holiday or have to work? I've not had the impression that either of the two worked or were working although there is some mention of him having a "timber" company or something that I doubt is lucrative or active.

Just thoughts.
 
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And where is it he told the mother Charlise was that she believed until the next day???

If she is innocent, I am very sorry for her loss and what she is going through but as far as the public believing she knew nothing, it isn't much of an explanation to convince anyone of anything, LE knows more I'm sure. A very expected "she believed him" to the public and that's it.
 

Mr Stein was charged with killing Charlise in January 2022 and has remained behind bars on remand since then.

On Friday, the court was told he would remain in custody after another delay to his legal proceedings.

His lawyer Peter Katsoolis sought “one final adjournment” of six weeks to allow the defence and prosecution to hold another case conference.

“The briefs are of some complexity,” he told the court.

“The defence team is still working through them.”
 

Justin Stein to face trial in May over alleged murder of Charlise Mutten​

A man who allegedly murdered his nine-year-old stepdaughter and dumped her body in a barrel in the bush will face trial later this year.
Justin Stein, 32, appeared in the NSW Supreme Court via audio visual link on Monday as he prepares to stand trial over the allegations.

He is accused of murdering Charlise Mutten, the daughter of his fiancee, while on a family holiday in the NSW Blue Mountains and dumping her body in a plastic barrel.

The schoolgirl’s body was discovered with gunshot wounds in bushland near the Colo River in the NSW Central Tablelands in January 2022.

Mr Stein has denied murdering the nine-year-old after he was left alone with her on January 11.

On Monday, Justice Helen Wilson confirmed that Mr Stein would face a seven-week trial in the NSW Supreme Court at Parramatta on May 6.

Prosecutor Ken McKay SC said the Crown would seek to rely on evidence of websites Mr Stein had accessed in the lead-up to January 12 when Charlise disappeared.

He also foreshadowed an application for the judge to visit the house in Mt Wilson where Mr Stein allegedly killed Charlise.
 
Websites he had accessed. Seven week trial, long one. This case was something else. Praying for justice.
 

Murder trial begins for alleged schoolgirl killer​

The man accused of murdering nine-year-old Charlise Mutten had an ongoing drug issue and had previously spent time in jail, a court has been told.

Justin Laurens Stein, 33, is accused of killing the schoolgirl on or around January 12, 2022, at Mount Wilson, in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney.

He has pleaded not guilty.

Stein was in a relationship with Kallista Mutten at the time of the alleged murder, the Crown said.

In a trial starting in the NSW Supreme Court on Monday, a jury heard Stein had previously served a jail sentence for drug-related offences and was undergoing treatment for heroin addiction.

He was also on medication for schizophrenia, the court was told.

Crown prosecutor Ken McKay SC said Stein was in a relationship with Charlise's mother, Kallista Mutten, at the time of the alleged murder.

The pair met while they were both serving jail sentences.

Ms Mutten was in prison for the crime of dangerous driving occasioning death, the court was told.

At some time prior to Charlise's death, Stein and Ms Mutten committed a break-and-enter together, during which two firearms were taken, the jury heard.

"One of them ... is of importance in the case the Crown brings on the murder charge," Mr McKay said.


"The crown case will be that Stein shot Charlise Mutten," Mr McKay said.

Justice Helen Wilson informed the jury some aspects of the case could be confronting and reminded them of the importance of remaining impartial.

"This is a trial in which it is alleged a nine-year-old child was shot to death," she said.

"Some people find evidence of the death of a child particularly confronting.

"You will need to be assured that you can look at such evidence and ... maintain complete impartiality."

The trial is expected to run for six weeks.
 

Accused killer blames schoolgirl’s mum for her shooting​

A man on trial for murdering Charlise Mutten claims it was the nine-year-old’s mother who shot the schoolgirl rather than him, a court has been told.

He had changed his account several times, the court heard, initially telling Mutten her daughter was missing and pretending to search for her, before telling a corrections officer it was the girl’s mother who shot and killed the nine-year-old.

But Stein’s lawyer, Carolyn Davenport SC, told the jury her client had changed his story because he had initially been trying to protect Mutten.

She said evidence would show it was Mutten who had motive to carry out the killing, rather than Stein.


In his opening statement, McKay told the jury Stein had transported the barrel containing Charlise’s body on the back of his ute with the intention of dumping it.

CCTV footage captured Stein stopping once to buy five 20-kilogram bags of sand from Bunnings and on another occasion to purchase a can of Coke, a slushie and a Snickers bar before the body was disposed of, the court was told.
 

Charlise Mutten asked if her alleged killer would make a good dad, jury told​

Nine-year-old Charlise Mutten had a loving and unconditional relationship with her mother and had asked whether her mother’s fiance, Justin Stein, would make a good dad, a Sydney jury has heard.


Giving evidence on Tuesday, the second day of Stein’s NSW Supreme Court trial, Clinton Mutten Senior painted a picture of his granddaughter, whom he cared for with his wife in Tweed Heads following decisions made regarding Kallista’s ability to care for the girl after the first four years of her life.

He said Charlise had been an enthusiastic public speaker and avid reader, rarely needed to be disciplined, took to swimming “like a duck to water” and was tall for her age, standing “head and shoulders above most of the class”.

Charlise had also loved animals, and “for at least two years, she’d always harp on [about] how she wanted to be a veterinary surgeon”, he said.


Asked by Crown prosecutor Nicholas Marney about Charlise’s relationship with her mother, the grandfather said it was “very loving” and “unconditional”, and their strong bond “was always there”.

“Charlise would cry at times, saying that she missed her mother,” he said. “She looked forward to communicating with her.”

He said Charlise would video-call her mother, but there were “always three people there”, including Stein.

Asked by the prosecutor if Charlise ever expressed an opinion about Stein, the grandfather said: “She said that she really liked Justin, and she asked me if … I thought that he would be a good dad”.

Mutten Snr said Charlise “cried herself to sleep” when a planned visit to see her mother was cancelled in Easter 2021 due to Kallista Mutten being hospitalised for mental health issues, but was “happy and excited” when it was rescheduled for December 2021 and packed her favourite toys.

“I was under the impression that she’d be staying with her mother, her [mother’s] fiance Justin Stein, and Justin Stein’s mother,” he said, adding this was at Wildenstein, which was also a wedding venue.

“I was told that there would be times, as a getaway, they would be staying at a holiday venue on a river.”


He said he had emailed Stein about Charlise “a week before her murder”, asking that she have a COVID-19 test so that she could fly home on January 18, but received no reply.

The grandfather said police contacted him around January 14 to inform him Charlise was missing, and he was later told when her body had been found.

Under cross-examination, Stein’s barrister, Carolyn Davenport, SC, asked Mutten Snr whether he was concerned about sending the girl to a potentially “questionable” environment.

“No, I was under the impression that both had cleaned their act up,” he replied.
 

‘I need to report my daughter missing’: Triple-zero call from Charlise Mutten’s mother​

A jury has heard the moment Charlise Mutten’s mother reported her daughter missing from the Blue Mountains, sobbing as she told a triple-zero operator she last saw the nine-year-old “two nights ago” and had left her with her fiance Justin Stein.

The phone call, made by Kallista Mutten at 8.12am on January 14, 2022, was played at Stein’s NSW Supreme Court trial on Wednesday. The 33-year-old has denied murdering Charlise, claiming he saw her mother shoot her daughter, but admits he disposed of her body in a barrel by the Colo River.

In the recording, the operator stated, “Go ahead, you’ve got the police”, and Kallista Mutten cried as she replied, “I’m sorry, I need to report my daughter missing … she’s nine”.

She said Charlise had disappeared from the property on Shadforth Road at Mount Wilson, which is Stein’s family estate called Wildenstein, and that she was using the landline due to phone reception.

Asked when she last saw her daughter, the mother replied: “Two nights ago.”

“Where did she go two nights ago?” the operator asked.

“She was here, I wasn’t here, my partner was here,” Kallista Mutten replied.

“During the morning, she was really, she was sort of sick … lethargic … and I was two-and-a-half hours away.

“Justin and the lady that … came over to do the auction for his mum, which was her friend, he asked if she could mind her while he went and got me … didn’t want her in the car … throwing up.

“She was fine with that, and the lady said, ‘No worries, take all the time you want’, and when we got back, they were gone, and I thought maybe she’s taken … so I rung the hospitals, but nup.”

Asked whether “yesterday morning was the last time someone saw her”, Charlise’s mother replied, “Umm, yeah. I’ve been looking for her in the bush and everything, that’s why it’s taken two days.”

Kallista Mutten was told the police would come out and said: “My partner will be able to tell them what, you know, ’cause I wasn’t here.”

She was asked by the operator if she had “any thoughts of where she [Charlise] might have gone”, and she said her daughter was “here on holidays for a month”.

The operator said police would come out straight away and “they’ll start looking for your daughter”.

Charlise’s body was found with two gunshot wounds on January 18, 2022.

Crown prosecutor Ken McKay, SC, has alleged Stein shot Charlise then fed her mother lies that her daughter was missing, including by pretending he had left her in the care of a woman who had come to value Wildenstein, and suggesting his former criminal associates may have taken her.

The prosecutor said Stein’s story changed again when he told police Charlise had not been at the property with him on January 11 or 12, that he had last seen her on January 10, and had only become aware she was missing when Kallista Mutten called him on January 14.

McKay alleged evidence, including phone data, placed Stein at Mount Wilson on the night of January 11 and Kallista Mutten at the Riviera Ski Gardens caravan park, where Stein owned a caravan.

According to records obtained by police, Stein sent a text to his partner at 10.06am on January 12 which read: “Am literally about to walk out the door. Charsey is staying put in bed. She’s wrecked and already fallen back to sleep”, then left at 10.13am. Prosecutors allege by that point Charlise was dead.

McKay said Stein was medicated for schizophrenia with Quetiapine, which can cause nausea and vomiting, and later toxicology examination of Charlise found the drug in her system. He said the jury may infer Stein gave Charlise the drug “by design or … accidentally”.

Stein’s barrister Carolyn Davenport, SC, has said her client told various stories “to protect Kallista”, and the girl was killed “by her mother” at the Mount Wilson property on the night of January 12.

The jury has heard that Stein and Kallista Mutten met while each serving prison sentences and had a history of being involved with drugs. Charlise lived with her grandparents in Tweed Heads and had been visiting the couple during the school holidays.
 
I don't believe for one minute her mother shot her. I hate criminals and defendants like this trying to destroy another's life by blaming their bad act on them and in this case it is a victim's family member!!!! It's disgusting and adding more harm, injury and grief and not taking responsibility as few evil murderers do AND NAMING someone iinnocent. Same goes on in Delphi by the defendant and defense attorneys and the same goes on in Daybell, however, Alex was probably guilty as well but he sure was not the only one nor is the defendant innocent. Imo of course. What was his motive?? Was there SA and they just don't say? And she had some of his psych drug in he system? It isn't like they had to raise her, her grandparents did that so no need to get her out of his own selfish way.

All that said some things disturb me here and always have. Why was she left with him and mom went off alone to the campground or whatever? Why weren't they all together or daughter with mom? Maybe she thought with him for the day with his mom around it was nothing to worry about and they were supposed to come after and be at the campground too? I can't recall the early on details but seems to me they were not solid and a few things said in various news outlets, or perhaps speculated, not sure. I forget but know it was all not consistent, I feel I recall that and saying as much.

He's guilty, I have little doubt. I do wonder though at the choices here. And what the deal really was. Sounds false about asking someone to watch her, one lie, and were they even there?? His mother and friend or whatever it was... Did he even STAY there with her...? Was mom for SURE at the camper or whatever?

Pretty rare imo mom's bf is alone with a daughter of that age and shoots her. We all know what they generally do and how they generally are murdered after or during. WTF was this evil POS's motive or reason?!
 
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Read the text message Charlise Mutten's mother sent friends after her daughter disappeared​

Mr McKay alleges Mr Stein was the 'last person' to see Charlise and had the opportunity to kill her between 7.16pm on January 11 and 10.06am on January 12.

The jury was told Mr Stein went and retrieved Ms Mutten from the caravan park later on January 12, with the mother under the impression Charlise was unwell and being looked after at the Mount Wilson property.

When they arrived to find Charlise was not there, Ms Mutten called two local hospitals to try and locate her daughter on the night of January 12, before the pair went to sleep.

During the night, the jury was told Ms Mutten went through Mr Stein's phone and saw he had been accessing adult dating sites which caused her 'distress'.

In the early hours of January 13 Ms Mutten took Mr Stein's Holden Colorado ute and went to a nearby park where she sent messages to friends 'consistent with her belief the child was missing', Mr McKay said.

'I'm devo and now my daughter is missing,' one message read.

When she later returned to the property she sent a message to Mr Stein saying: 'I just want my daughter'.

The jury was told there was a 'confrontation' between the couple at the house before Ms Mutten again took off in his car, prompting Mr Stein to leave eight voicemails on her phone demanding she bring it back.

'If you don't bring it back I am going to f**king hurt you as well as everyone else, and I'll tell the police you're the one who took your daughter so they will bring back my f**king car,' the recording, which was played to the jury, said.

The jury heard another voicemail where Mr Stein said: 'I've got my f**king guns and I'm going to f**king kill you now, and I'm f**king serious, you've f**ked me over for the last time ... it was you doing this to Charlise to f**k me wasn't it c**t, I'm going to kill you.'

In another message, Mr Stein tells his then-fiancée he 'does the right thing' by 'looking after' her before saying she is 'going down dog'.
 
I've gone all the years of my OLD life without using WTF but I am beyond it any longer. WTF?

Clear STILL it is him BUT what the heck is she doing??

Am I following this right and the dates? So she took off and left her daughter because of issues between them and found his access to adult dating sites....

So he went and got her and brought her back but the daughter was gone. Well something missing here is what does his mom and others have to say? I'm pretty certain he is lying BUT what do they say??? WAs his momom home with the child and where was she/they when he picked mom up and brought her back and allegedly had let her there but she was no missing? I mean did they not fail their agreed duty or was she never there or THEY not there? I would think and hope this will come out as the trial gos on.

Mom taking his UTE I can understand IF this upset and that's the only vehicle they came with came with with Charlise on this "vacation". She also thinks about it must have had keys or access to his. So if ONLY one vehicle the pair shared, this also means he had to have taken he to the campground no and Charlise back with him who did not stay with mom? OR she stayed with his mom while he took mom to the campground? There's a lot here yet that is not covered. A TON actually.
 

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