On Friday, 39-year-old Samantha Kelly’s body was found wrapped in a tarpaulin in a dry creek bed in bushland near Shelbourne, south-west Bendigo.

Police have since charged 44-year-old Peter Arthur, of Kangaroo Flat, with one count of murder.

Christine Lyons, 44, and Ronald Lyons, 43, also from Kangaroo Flat, have been charged with being an accessory.

The three flatmates that have been charged live together in a house, whilst Samantha and her children lived in detached bungalow on the same property.

At an out-of-sessions court hearing in Bendigo, Detective Sergeant Chris Saulle told the court that that on or about January 20, Arthur went to Samatha’s bungalow and “inflicted fatal injuries” on Ms Kelly with a hammer.

Police allege that he immediately returned to the main house and told Mr Lyons and Ms Lyons that he had killed Ms Kelly.

The following day, the trio allegedly concocted a story about Ms Kelly leaving of her own accord on January 23.

“The co-accused then spread the story that they had manufactured,” Detective Sergeant Saulle said.

Two days after the murder, Arthur and Ronald Lyons removed Ms Kelly’s body from the unit and put it into a van, police alleged.

Ronald Lyons told the hearing that, “I helped him move the body from the unit to the van. That’s it.”

The court heard they then told Ms Kelly’s four children that their mother had abandoned them and that she’d had enough.

All three were remanded in custody to appear in court on Monday.

Ms Kelly was reported missing by her brother two weeks after she was last seen near a Kangaroo Flat shopping centre on January 20.

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  • that is really sad. i feel sorry for her family. i hope that they can get some answers about what happened to their loved one!


  • So upsetting and sad and cruel what they did and horrid, I hope they don’t get out of jail. She was such a nice lady.


  • Horrendous and devastating for her family. Let’s hope the law punishes those who committed this evil crime.


  • Absolutely shocking.that poor woman and those poor children


  • What a cruel thing to say to children.


  • What was his motive? Why would someone ruin so many lives including his own?


  • Robert became an accessory to murder by helping him move her body.


  • What a horrible story. I am glad they have charges these people with this absolutely shocking crime. I hope this poor lady’s children will be well cared for; my thoughts are with them.


  • Always s tragic loss of life when murder is at play. So glad they have found and charged the murderers.


  • Horrendous! Poor woman! And the motive? Why was she killed? So sorry for her! :-(


  • Lke je


  • I hope these were not the “friends” that were watching the children. This is dreadful. Children should not loose a parent so young.


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