Griffith mum Nicole Wetzler’s death a mystery
IT appeared to be a suicide but police are investigating whether a young mother found dead inside a shed in rural NSW was actually murdered.
Nicole Wetzler's body was discovered on the property in Kookora St, Griffith, in the early hours of Sunday morning after reports of a "concern for welfare".
Her former partner Ashley James Alchin, who was the subject of an apprehended violence order (AVO), knocked on neighbours' doors at 4am saying something was wrong at the premises next door.
When police arrived they found 27-year-old Ms Wetzler inside a rear shed away from the main residence.
Alchin, 35, was taken into custody and charged a few hours later with three counts of breaching an AVO as he was banned from the address. There is no suggestion that Alchin was involved in Ms Wetzler's death.
He was also charged with driving an unregistered vehicle while disqualified.
"There are issues we have to investigate which indicate the woman may have taken her own life but it's still early and we have to investigate all the physical evidence at the scene as well,'' a NSW detective said.
Homicide officers are helping local police with the investigation but have not travelled to the area as yet.
"A thorough autopsy also has to be a carried out to be more specific about the cause of death,'' the detective said.
Police said that Alchin should not have been at the Kookora St residence due to the terms of court orders.
Police stressed that the charges were not related to Ms Wetzler's death and were only for breaching orders as well as one count of driving during a disqualification period and driving an unregistered vehicle.
Alchin did not apply for bail. It was formally refused at Griffith Local Court yesterday and the matter will return to court today.
Yesterday family and friends paid tribute to Ms Wetzler.
The father of her two-year-old daughter said he would make sure their little girl grew up remembering her mum.
"She was a lovely mother to my daughter," he told The Daily Telegraph. "We have the best child in the world. She will never be forgotten."
Ms Wetzler had a tattoo which said "Life won't wait".
Her online profile said she had formerly worked at Australia's largest family-owned winery, Casella Family Brands, the $1.5 billion company that created the world-famous Yellow Tail wine brand.
She posted pictures of her and her daughter, described by friends as a "little angel", and celebrated milestones like her first tooth.
Family members were comforted on social media by friends yesterday following her tragic death. "Sending hugs," one person wrote.
Another said: "Sending you all my strength."
One friend said she "woke up this morning hoping it was a dream".
"Even though our hearts are breaking, I'm glad to have met you and that I got to call you a friend," she wrote on Facebook.