A 73-year-old grandmother has pleaded guilty to manslaughter over the killing of a teenager whose bashed body was found in a wheelie bin buried in a suburban backyard.
The remains of Louise O'Brien, 18, were found by police at the home of Patricia Goddard in the Wollongong suburb of Bellambi in March last year.
Today, the 73-year-old admitted that on October 12, 2008, the young girl was struck in the head, probably with a hammer, and that Goddard stood by and watched her die.
The ambulance and police were called to Goddard's home by neighbours, but Goddard kept the badly injured girl hidden from view. She lay her on a bean bag and refused to give her medical treatment.
"Ms Goddard arranged for [Ms O'Brien] to move to a caravan at the rear of the house," says an agreed statement of facts tendered in court today.
"It is believed the deceased died in the caravan."
Around 18 months later, following a tip from an unnamed witness, police found the teenager's remains in a wheelie bin buried at the house.
In the NSW Supreme Court today, Goddard, looking shaky and pale, pleaded the guilty to felonious slaying - one of the many categories of manslaughter - in the NSW Supreme Court.
The 73-year-old had initially been charged with murder over the killing, but the charge was downgraded to manslaughter two weeks ago. It was revealed that Goddard is suffering from stage two dementia and is likely to deteriorate rapidly in the coming years.
Goddard's daughter, Tracey Taylor, 46, who charged with accessory to murder over the crime, has now been charged with accessory to manslaughter.
The court heard that Goddard will give evidence for the prosecution at her daughter's upcoming district court trial.
Taylor, who has been in jail for over a year, will be released on bail today and return to Wollongong.
Goddard will be sentenced on December 7.