School cleaner Vincent Stanford has appeared in court for his sentence hearing for the murder of teacher Stephanie Scott.
Facing her daughter's killer, Stephanie's mother, Merrilyn Scott gave her victim's impact statement, spoke proudly of her beloved daughter describing her as, “truly one of the special ones”.
“She represented all that was good about humankind."
Addressing Stanford, who refused to look at her, she said he was “too pathetic and inept to make a life of his own, he chose to take a life he had no right to.”
“Stephanie is with me from my first conscious thought of a morning until I whisper ‘goodnight my darling girl’ in the darkness of my bed,” Mrs Scott continued.
“The nights are haunted by visions so terrible.
“It sickens me to think the last few moments on Earth Stephanie would have been at a loss to comprehend how this person, to whom she had only ever been polite and pleasant, could betray her so badly,” she added.
“Did she see the knife? Did she know her fate? Did she see his fist before he pounded her precious life into oblivion? And even as her life drained away, his assault continued."
The court also viewed chilling police interview recordings from the Junee Correctional Centre on April 11, 2015, have been played to the court, in which the 25-year-old confesses to the murder and explained his motivation.
"I agree to the charges and confess to the murder of Stephanie - I can't remember her surname…" said Stanford according to News.com.au.
When asked why he murdered Ms Scott, Stanford says: "I think I went a little nuts. I just could not stop myself."
He described how when he saw her at school on Saturday April 8, suddenly a feeling came over him.
“Just that I had to kill her. I wasn't angry or anything. Basically emotionless," he said.
As Ms Scott prepared to leave to head off to celebrate Easter with her family before getting married later that week, Stanford grabbed her from behind and dragged her into a storeroom.
“I have had anger attacks in the past; I have been treated for that. I think I needed to see a psychiatrist,” Stanford told police as he outline how he then raped her and killed her.
Punching her between 30 and 40 times, he then stabbed her in the neck to ensure she was dead.
He cleaned up the blood with a high-pressure hose before driving 70km to dump her body in the Cocoparra National Park where he doused her body with petrol and set her alight.
The court also heard how in the weeks before her murder, Stanford had searched the internet for “bride rape” and “bride killing”.
“The search histories from the offender’s phone and computer reveal the offender very regularly searched in relation to violent rape, violent sex, hardcore porn, and murder,” the agreed statement of facts states according to SMH.
“He also conducts searches in relation to necrophilia and ‘necro rape’.”
The day before the murder he purchased a knife and handcuffs, and attempted to buy leg-cuffs. The items were found by police after his arrest.
Standford’s sentence is expected to be handed down on Thursday.