No mo­tive for ‘cold’ ex­e­cu­tion

‘Cow­ardly’ way teen shot his brother in hor­rific killing

The Chronicle - - Killer Teens Special Report - TARA MIKO tara.miko@thechron­i­cle.com.au

HIS high school teacher be­ing a se­nior mem­ber of the Ku Klux Klan didn’t in­flu­ence An­thony David Rowl­ing­son’s plan to shoot his own brother.

In fact, the real rea­son why the then-16-year-old shot Robert Rowl­ing­son, 19, twice with a gun he’d taken from their fa­ther’s safe has never been iden­ti­fied.

That’s de­spite mul­ti­ple psy­chi­atric as­sess­ments filed with var­i­ous courts in pa­role bids by the teenage killer from Pittsworth dubbed by the courts a “cold-blooded” mur­derer.

Robert, a well-known foot­ball player, had been work­ing on his car at the Rowl­ing­son fam­ily home in Pittsworth on Sun­day, July 15, 2007.

An­thony shot his brother twice – once in the back of the head af­ter he’d fallen to the ground af­ter the first shot – then used his fa­ther’s fork­lift to load his body into the back of Robert’s car.

Cov­er­ing the blood on the ground with some dirt, An­thony drove around the dis­trict for a time be­fore call­ing on his high school teacher, Graeme Mc­Neil, to help him dump Robert’s body off a bridge into a flood­way.

An­thony was ques­tioned by po­lice two days later, laugh­ing at them when of­fi­cers sug­gested it would give his par­ents peace of mind to lo­cate his brother.

He later con­fessed and tried to bro­ker a deal with po­lice that he needed some­thing done for him.

“I am in pos­ses­sion of some in­crim­i­nat­ing in­for­ma­tion about a col­league of mine, and if you give me a guar­an­tee that you will de­stroy it, I will show you where my brother is, and tell you ev­ery­thing,” An­thony said.

The in­for­ma­tion re­lated to Mc­Neil and his mem­ber­ship of the KKK, ev­i­dence of which An­thony had found when us­ing his teacher’s lap­top loaned to him.

Psy­chi­a­trists have never been able to de­ter­mine the de­fin­i­tive mo­tive but one, Dr Scott Harden, said An­thony was a “young man who val­ues se­crecy and con­trol above all else”.

An­thony’s own le­gal coun­sel con­ceded the mur­der of his brother was a “par­tic­u­larly heinous of­fence” as the prose­cu­tion sought, due to it be­ing in “the worst cat­e­gory of the of­fence of mur­der”, that he serve life in jail.

Sub­mis­sions of 12 to 13 years in de­ten­tion were re­jected.

“This was a cold-blooded mur­der, a premed­i­tated mur­der, in which you, with­out any provo­ca­tion – and I don’t mean in the le­gal sense – with­out any provo­ca­tion at all, shot your brother in a very cow­ardly way,” Jus­tice Anthe Philippide­s said.

“There was noth­ing heroic about this death.

“The lack of re­morse, the at­tempt to fool the po­lice and your fam­ily, al­low­ing your par­ents to be­come more and more ag­i­tated demon­strates, with­out a doubt, the con­cerns about your per­son­al­ity deficits men­tioned by the ex­perts.”

Jus­tice Philippide­s re­jected An­thony’s ap­pli­ca­tion to have his name sup­pressed.

“Be­cause of the mat­ters that are raised in the psy­chi­a­trist’s re­port, that un­less you have un­der­gone quite substantia­l re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion by way of per­son­al­ity treat­ment with cog­ni­tive and be­havioural ther­apy, that you will con­sti­tute a danger to the com­mu­nity … I would per­mit iden­ti­fy­ing in­for­ma­tion about you to be pub­lished af­ter the pe­riod for giv­ing a no­tice of ap­peal or ap­pli­ca­tion for leave to ap­peal, in your case, against sen­tence has ended.”

Next in Killer Teens se­ries: Brother’s bru­tal rape and stab­bing mur­der of his sis­ter. See thechron­i­cle.com.au

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THIS WAS A COLD-BLOODED MUR­DER, A PREMED­I­TATED MUR­DER, IN WHICH YOU, WITH­OUT ANY PROVO­CA­TION ... SHOT YOUR BROTHER IN A VERY COW­ARDLY WAY.

JUS­TICE ANTHE PHILIPPIDE­S

Photo: Con­trib­uted

Photo: Bev Lacey

Photo: Bev Lacey

MO­TIVE UN­CLEAR: An­thony Rowl­ing­son, then 16, laughed when he was be­ing ques­tioned by de­tec­tives as po­lice (above) searched for his older brother Robert Rowl­ing­son. An­thony later con­fessed to killing the 19-year-old.

SHOCK: Robert Rowl­ing­son was shot twice by his younger brother in what the courts de­scribed as a ‘cold-blooded’ and ‘cow­ardly’ ex­e­cu­tion.

SEARCH: De­tec­tives and foren­sic of­fi­cers search for ev­i­dence in the mur­der of Pittsworth teen Robert Rowl­ing­son.

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