Evidence has been completed in the Supreme Court murder trial over the death of Chad Hadden.
Crown Prosecutor Lee Carr and Public Defender Peter Krisenthal made their closing submissions to the jury at Newcastle courthouse on Wednesday.
Shane Holmes, 45, is being tried for murder over the death of Mr Hadden, who died in hospital in June, 2018 - five-and-a-half months after Mr Holmes punched him in the head, causing him to fall to the ground.
The pair had spent the afternoon drinking beer together at Queens Wharf Hotel but were ejected from the venue separately after Mr Hadden started a melee with his friend over missing cigarettes.
Mr Hadden approached Mr Holmes near the waterfront less than half an hour later and threatened him, the court heard, before Mr Holmes punched him.
Mr Holmes has pleaded guilty to manslaughter and not guilty to murder.
Mr Carr argued that Mr Holmes was angry from the earlier scuffle when he resorted to "immediate violence" and threw the fatal punch.
He said the evidence of four witnesses - who did not see the initial punch but told the court they had seen Mr Holmes strike Mr Hadden on the ground after the initial blow - showed he was angry.
"At the time that fatal blow was struck ... his intent was to seriously hurt that man," Mr Carr said.
Part of Mr Holmes' defense was that he slapped - not punched - Mr Hadden after he had fallen and he had lashed out with no intent.
Mr Krisenthal said the totality of the evidence - including CCTV vision of Mr Holmes co-operating with a direction to leave Queens Wharf Hotel - "flies in the face" of the Crown's case that Mr Holmes was angry at the time of the punch.
He said his client did not intend to cause "really serious bodily harm".
"He wrongly and unlawfully lashed out at Mr Hadden, but he had no intent," he said.
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