A punch-up between brothers ended in a tragic moment, with one dead and the other set to remain in custody for now after being denied bail.
Peter Kinthari, a 39-year-old father-of- six, has been charged with manslaughter after the death of his brother in the northern Darwin suburb of Jingili on Wednesday night.
Northern Territory Police described the death as a domestic violence incident During a bail application on Friday afternoon, the court heard that the brothers, who hail from the remote community of Wadeye, had engaged in a fair fight during a prolonged drinking session.
Lawyer John Blackley, from the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency, said the accused's brother and his wife had flown in from Wadeye the day before they met their family members and started drinking heavily.
The two brothers started arguing, with witnesses alleging that verbal taunts soon spilled over into physical violence, with an ensuing altercation lasting at least two hours.
At one point, the fighting was interrupted by an intermission where both the accused and the deceased were in good spirits. The violence escalated further, with the court hearing allegations read by the prosecutor from a sober, independent eyewitness that the accused had king hit his brother in the face.
The witness statement reads that Peter Kinthari saw the skinnier guy absolutely belt the skinnier guy, knocking him from a standing position to the ground.
Crown prosecutor Marty Aust said the witness had viewed the victim completely out of it, sitting on the road by himself when he was approached by his brother, who was yelling at him aggressively.
I saw the shorter, fatter bloke strike the skinnier bloke very, very hard. It was hard enough to send the skinny bloke flying backwards, it was so hard to believe that he had been kicked in the head, the eyewitness statement said.
The court heard of the 41-year-old brother, whose name is withheld for cultural reasons, is believed to have died from a ruptured pancreas, which the prosecution will allege was caused by blunt force trauma inflicted during the fight.
The defence team said that there were questions over the cause of death, citing an incident where the victim fell over in the shower in the immediate wake of the punch-up.
Judge David Woodroffe described the death as a tragic incident but refused bail to the accused on the grounds that it was simply too serious to do so.
Mr Blackley, who had pushed for bail so that his client could look after his children, including two infants, said that there was a chance that Mr Kinthari would face threats of retribution from family members while on remand.
The accused will be in Darwin on September 28.