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Pregnant partner of alleged Fortnite attacker asks for him to return home, & more in News in 5.

-With AAP.

1. Pregnant woman who was allegedly assaulted by partner while playing Fortnite has asked for him to return home.

The pregnant partner of the man who livestreamed an alleged domestic violence incident while playing the game Fortnite has pleaded with the judge for him to return home.

Luke Munday appeared before Camden Local Court on Thursday morning after he came to worldwide attention after chilling footage of him allegedly beating his partner during a Fortnite livestream was sent to police.

Fortnite user MrDeadMoth was caught on camera allegedly beating his partner.

Following the alleged assault on Sunday night, police issued an apprehended violence order (AVO) that stopped Munday from going within 100 metres of his partner's work and stopped him from returning to the family home in Oran Park.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported the court heard on Thursday that Munday's partner had written a letter in support of changing the AVO so he could return home.

Magistrate Ian Cheetham refused to life the AVO despite her request.

The court also heard of Munday's previous convictions: He was charged with malicious damage and common assault in 2011, but neither of these charges were related to a domestic violence incident.

Munday, who goes by the name MrDeadMoth online, spoke about the incident to 7 News earlier this week.

"It’s never happened before and it won’t happen again," he said. "It’s a one off and she will corroborate that in court."

He is expected to make a plea through his lawyer when his case is mentioned in court on January 10.

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If you or someone you know needs to talk to someone now, call the DVConnect Womensline on 1800 811 811, the DVConnect Mensline on 1800 600 636, the Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800, or the National Sexual Assault and Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service on 1800RESPECT/1800 737 732.

If you or someone you know is at immediate threat of violence, call triple zero (000) and ask for police.

2. Chris Dawson in court accused of murder.


Chris Dawson is expected to apply for bail after he was charged with the alleged murder of his wife Sydney mother-of-two Lynette Dawson almost 40 years ago.

The 70-year-old former rugby league player, who intends to plead not guilty, faced Sydney Central Local Court via video link on December 6 charged with the murder of his wife on Sydney's northern beaches in early 1982.

His lawyer, Greg Walsh, said at the time he "strenuously asserts his innocence" and that Dawson was "anxious and stressed about the situation" and planned to plead not guilty.

Dawson is due to face the same court on Friday.

Ms Dawson was 33 when she disappeared in 1982 leaving behind two young daughters.

Her husband reported her missing almost six weeks later, and her body has never been found.

The case was the subject of The Australian newspaper's investigative podcast The Teacher's Pet.

NSW Police, who reopened the cold case in 2015, said fresh statements from at least two witnesses led to the arrest of the former Newtown rugby league player on the Gold Coast on December 5.

The accused killer, who lives at Coolum Beach, was extradited from Queensland on December 6.

3. Dragons player accused of sexual assault.

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NSW State of Origin player Jack de Belin has been granted conditional bail after he was charged with aggravated sexual assault.

The alleged incident involved a 19-year-old woman at a home unit in Wollongong in the early hours of Sunday morning.

The 27-year-old St George Illawarra Dragon forward voluntarily attended Wollongong Police Station on Thursday afternoon and was charged with one count of aggravated sexual assault in company and was granted conditional bail to appear at Wollongong Local Court on February 12.

The NRL said the integrity unit has been advised.

The St George Illawarra Dragons said in a statement the club is taking the matter "very seriously".

De Belin made his debut for NSW this year in the State of Origin and has played 153 NRL games.

It comes as NRL stars Jarryd Hayne and Dylan Walker both faced court earlier this week over separate assault charges.

Hayne, 30, has been charged with aggravated sexual assault and inflicting actual bodily harm after he allegedly had sex with a 26-year-old woman without her consent in Newcastle on September 30.

His barrister told the court on Monday Hayne intends to plead not guilty.

Meanwhile, Walker, 24, was charged with common assault and assault occasioning actual bodily harm - both domestic violence-related - after his partner suffered cuts to her shoulder, leg and feet in Dee Why on December 6.

Walker has pleaded not guilty.

4. Report sheds light on 'hidden homeless'.

Australian couch surfers are generally young, female and without a job.

That's the findings from the first in-depth analysis of couch surfers by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare as the nation grapples with its growing number of homeless people.

The AIHW followed 16,300 adult and teenage couch surfers who sought help from specialist homeless services over a period of four years from 2011.

It described couch surfers as being among the most hidden groups of people experiencing homelessness, mainly because they often move between the homes of friends, relatives and strangers.

Almost half of the couch surfers were aged between 15 and 24, while 60 per cent were female.

Fewer than one in 10 had a job and more than a third had either experienced family violence or mental health problems.

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More than five in 10 sought help from specialist homeless services more than once during the four-year period.

"Couch surfers most frequently sought help with accommodation, followed by assistance with interpersonal relationships and financial difficulties," AIHW spokesman Matthew James said.

Overall, the AIHW found that there's a rising number of Australians turning to specialist homeless services.

Almost 288,800 people - or one in 85 Australians - sought help last financial year, 13 per cent more than four years ago.

Nearly two thirds were female, more than one third were single parents, and close to three in 10 were under 18.

The number of people over 45 needing help has continued to rise, particularly those who are 65 and older.

"It's important to note that most - close to six in 10 - clients were not homeless when they sought assistance but were at risk of becoming homeless," Mr James said.

For many, the main reasons they needed help was because they were fleeing family violence or facing eviction.

Around the country, the Northern Territory recorded the highest rate of people seeking housing support, while NSW has seen annual growth of seven per cent in demand for housing services during the past four years.

Homelessness Australia chair Jenny Smith said a lack of affordable accommodation for people on low incomes was driving demand for help from homeless services.

"The waiting list for social housing has blown out to 200,000 and rising rents in the private rental market are pushing low income earners into rooming houses, motels and caravans," she said.

'Families on low incomes have simply run out of options when it comes to finding a home they can afford."

PROFILE OF AUSSIE COUCH SURFERS

* Six in 10 are female

* 49 per cent are aged 15-24

* Nine in 10 are unemployed or not in the labour force

* 15 per cent are enrolled in some form of education

* 37 per cent have experienced mental health issues

* One third have experienced domestic/family violence

(Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare)

5. I will never silence all my critics: Lodge.

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"Hopefully it encourages people who have done the wrong thing that they can get back."

Lodge was booed at season's start upon his return from his infamous drunken US attack but is now a Brisbane fan favourite, recently earning a two-year Broncos contract extension.

Lodge is a changed man off the field too, enjoying a settled life in Brisbane with partner Jess and their one-year-old son Coby.

However, Lodge admits he will never win over every critic.

"That will be with me for the rest of my career but I can't please everyone," Lodge said of criticism.

"All I can do is apologise for what I have done, be grateful for my opportunities.

"It doesn't matter what other people think as long as you are doing he right thing.

"Just because someone doesn't want you to achieve your dreams doesn't mean you have to listen to them and give up."

Lodge hopes to press his claims for a NSW debut in 2019 at Brisbane despite being linked to a move to South Sydney where Bennett now holds the reins.

"It was sad to see Wayne go. But we will stay in contact. I will always love Wayne for helping me out, that won't change," he said.

"But I was never going to follow him. It wasn't just Wayne who helped me at the Broncos, there were a lot of people from the chairman down.

"We've moved on. We have Anthony Seibold there now."

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