Amber-Rose murder accused fights to keep suppression

Amber-Rose Rush.
Amber-Rose Rush.

The Dunedin health professional accused of murdering a 16-year-old girl has had name suppression removed by a judge.

However, defence counsel Marie Taylor-Cyphers indicated at the end of this morning's hearing that she would appeal the decision; and thus suppression continued.

The 30-year-old defendant, who allegedly killed teenager Amber-Rose Rush on February 2, confirmed his denial of the murder charge when he appeared before the High Court at Dunedin this morning.

He also pleaded not guilty to four charges of threatening to kill added last month.

His denials were so vehement, he had to be told by the registrar to wait until the charges were read before he entered the pleas.

The defendant appeared before Justice Gerald Nation today who ruled suppression of his identity would lapse.

All arguments leading to that decision were suppressed by the judge.

He also made other orders keeping details of the case under wraps.

Amber-Rose was found dead by family members at her Corstorphine home the day after her alleged murder.

Police said her alleged attacker was known to her.

Her mother Lisa Ann voiced her heartache on social media.

‘‘How do I put into words what you mean to me my baby girl. You are literally my other half, my soul, my heart, my everything,” she wrote.

‘‘I don’t know how to be without you, I cannot see a way to live without you.”

In the following days, police launched a search of waterways at Blackhead and later confirmed they found “an item of interest”.

They then asked for public sightings of a silver BMW travelling between Dunedin and Balclutha in the early hours of February 3.

Amber-Rose was farewelled at a colourful funeral on February 10 where she was described as the ‘‘life of the party’’, who pretended to be tough but was a ‘‘marshmallow’’ on the inside.

The defendant was remanded in custody and will be back in court for a hearing on March 27.

His counsel had 48 hours to file a name suppression appeal with the Court of Appeal.

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