Grace Millane murder trial: Murder-accused changes story in police interview

The moment Grace Millane’s murder-accused claims he found the British backpacker dead in his apartment has been shown to the jury - an account that contradicted what he told police in an earlier interview.

In the Crown’s opening arguments last week, prosecutor Robin McCoubrey told the court the accused claimed he found Millane dead and lying on the floor in a CityLife hotel room in the morning of December 2.

This version of events was given by the accused in a police interview conducted on December 8 last year - a filmed interview that was played for the jury on Thursday.

In the video, the accused says he met with Millane at SkyCity on the night of December 1 and went to Andy’s Burger Bar. After going to the Mexican Cafe and then Bluestone Room, the pair went to the CityLife hotel.

Inside the hotel, the man says the pair kissed before Millane began talking about the film 50 Shades of Grey. They then had normal, "placid" sex.

He tells the detective that shortly afterwards, Millane wanted to involve "bondage". She asked him to bite her, which he did. He soon stopped and asked if that was really what she wanted.

"Let’s go with it," the accused says she replied.

He says at one point she held him around his neck and pushed down. He says they then swapped over and began having more "violent sex". The pair ended up on the floor.

The accused says Millane asked him to hold her arms tighter as well as her throat.

The pair then finished having sex and he went into the shower sweaty. He passed out, but later woke up, went to his bed, and thought Millane had left.

He woke up later in the morning to find Millane on the ground with her nose bleeding.

"I screamed, I yelled out at her. I tried to move her to see if she was awake."

This is a different version of events than the accused gave police in an interview on December 6. 

During that interview, the accused told Det Settle that he parted ways with Millane at about 8pm on December 1. He then went drinking and blacked out.

The Crown alleges the accused murdered Millane following their Tinder date via sustained pressure to the neck. The Defence, however, says it was an accident during rough consensual sex between an inexperienced couple.

Earlier in the trial, the court heard that early in the morning of December 2, searches were input on the accused’s phone for the Waitakere Ranges, the hottest type of fire, and pornography.