Man accused of murdering former wife by running car off road found dead in jail

By The Guardian (World News) | Created at 2024-06-06 04:55:23 | Updated at 2024-06-17 02:08:39 1 week ago


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A man accused of murdering his former wife by running her car off a country road has been found dead in jail almost a year after the high-speed crash.

Troy Armstrong, 36, was left severely disabled after allegedly deliberately driving his ute towards Kristy Armstrong’s sedan at 140km/h in Molong, central-western New South Wales, in June 2023.

A Corrective Services New South Wales spokesperson on Thursday said Armstrong was found unresponsive in his cell at Sydney’s Silverwater jail two days earlier.

“The inmate was immediately given first aid and taken to hospital but was pronounced deceased,” she said.

As well as being charged with murder over his ex-wife’s death, Armstrong was facing two attempted murder charges related to passengers in the sedan, who were left with minor injuries.

He was also charged with three counts of breaching apprehended violence orders.

Armstrong was under 24-hour guard in the intensive care unit at Royal North Shore hospital in Sydney in the months after the crash, which left him with serious brain and spinal injuries.

Questions had been raised about his fitness and likely longevity in facing trial, with his lawyer telling a hearing in May that Armstrong was barely fit enough to appear via audio-visual link.

“It does take some work to get him in the AVL suite, but he can appear,” lawyer Drew Hamilton told the court.

During an unsuccessful bail application in 2023, Hamilton told the court Armstrong posed little risk to the community as he had part of his skull removed and could no longer walk.

But police prosecutor Carl Smith described Armstrong as “an extremely dangerous person” who left the surviving victims in fear, despite his injuries.

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“[They] were terrified before this incident, they’re even more terrified now,” Sergeant Smith told the earlier hearing.

“He knew driving 140km/h into a car, of the likelihood that he’d be killing his wife, but [also] anyone else in that motor vehicle.”

Kristy Armstrong was one of many women remembered at an anti-gendered violence rally in Orange in April.

Her family and friends have attended each court appearance since Armstrong’s arrest, wearing purple in her honour.

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