Qld killer said victim walked into knife

Vanessa Lee Jenkins has been sentenced to nine years in jail for killing Paul Bakes.
Vanessa Lee Jenkins has been sentenced to nine years in jail for killing Paul Bakes.

Vanessa Lee Jenkins developed a "hyper-sensitivity" to controlling behaviour during a past violent relationship.

So when her new boyfriend, Paul Bakes, went to hug her during an argument in their home in Logan, south of Brisbane, she fatally plunged a kitchen knife into his chest as an impulse.

She followed up her crime with a lie her own defence barrister labelled "plainly preposterous", telling police that he had walked into the knife.

Jenkins, 42, was on Thursday sentenced to nine years in jail for Mr Bakes' manslaughter in November 2017 after pleading guilty in Brisbane Supreme Court.

The pair started dating about six months before his death, meeting after she sold Avon products to his mother.

Their relationship deteriorated in the weeks leading up to his death and she told him she wanted to leave before moving out of their Loganlea home into a motel.

A voicemail message to him from her said: "I hope you get run off the road. I hope you f****** die".

When she returned to the home, they argued in the kitchen before she picked up a knife with a 19cm blade and stabbed him in the chest, piercing his lung.

"She acknowledges she had become hyper-sensitive to things that she regarded as controlling behaviour, particularly being touched," defence barrister Robert East told the court.

"At some point in the argument, the deceased took hold of her to hug her and calm her down. She rejected him.

"She instructs as they were yelling, he came towards her and her belief was he was going to try and hold her again.

"In the heat of all of that, as he came towards her, she picked up the knife and lashed out in an unthinking expression of unbridled anger."

Her lie about her role in his death was a panicked reaction, Mr East said.

Mr Bakes, a 54-year-old truck driver, has been remembered by his siblings and children as a carefree joker and larrikin, whose death caused a "stream of tears".

Jenkins, the mother of a four-year-old girl, apologised to the family in court and expressed hope for their forgiveness.

"I am truly so sorry. No matter how many tears I cry, I can't ever take back that night," she said through tears.

She will be required to serve at least half her sentence before being considered for parole, but could be released as early as mid-2022 having served 517 days in pre-sentence custody.

Justice Susan Brown labelled her attack an unprovoked and "impulsive act in anger".

Australian Associated Press