Brian Johnston is expected to spend the next five to 10 days in an induced coma in hospital, his lawyer said, after he allegedly killed his estranged wife by setting her alight earlier this week.
Johnston is accused of murdering Kelly Wilkinson in the backyard of her Arundel home while her three children watched on in terror. He was found in a semiconscious state nearby a short time later with burn injuries.
His lawyer, Chris Hannay, told Sunrise on Friday morning his client remained in an induced coma in hospital.
“He’s had surgery recently, and is expected to stay in hospital for the next five to 10 days,” Mr Hannay said.
Mr Hannay confirmed Johnston had been in his office on Sunday to discuss “serious matters” that were due before the court on April 30.
“There was no indication that this horrid event would happen,” Mr Hannay said.
“If I could extend our sincere condolences to the family … My firm and I understand the issues involved with this, we have been involved with a number of these types of events before.
“There are no winners at the end of this. There can only be some sort of resolution for the family to get through it as easy as they can.”
Johnston, a former US Marine, was arrested on April 12 for the “serious” offences he allegedly committed over a four-day period during the second week of February, and had been granted bail just a week before her death.
In the wake of Ms Wilkinson’s death, Johnston was charged with murder. The case was first mentioned in Southport Magistrates Court on Wednesday, which he did not attend due to his medical condition.
He was remanded in custody with his case next set to be mentioned on June 4.