Man denied parole over ‘cold-blooded’ murder of brother

Rex Martinich |

A man who committed the “premeditated” murder of his brother has failed to overturn a parole board’s decision to keep him behind bars.

Anthony David Rowlingson was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing his brother Robert, 19, by shooting him twice at the family’s property at Pittsworth, west of Brisbane, on July 15, 2007.

Rowlingson, who was aged 16 at the time, then used a forklift to load Robert’s body into the boot of his own car and later threw his body off a bridge.

Justice Margaret White ordered that Rowlingson could be publicly named after she imposed the sentence on him at Toowoomba Supreme Court just over a year later for his “cold-blooded” acts.

Justice White said Rowlingson had treated his police interviews like an enjoyable game and tried to see how far he could go in deceiving investigators before admitting what he had done.

“You gave no indication of any real explanation for this,” Justice White said.

Rowlingson became eligible for parole in July last year after serving 15 years and on October 3 this year sought a judicial review from the Supreme Court in Brisbane into his release being denied by the Queensland parole board.

The application claimed the parole board had denied Rowlingson natural justice by failing to consider his genuine efforts to take up available rehabilitation opportunities while in custody.

Corrective services had assessed Rowlingson as being in the low to moderate risk category of violent reoffending but also raised concerns about his ability to adjust to living in the community after being incarcerated since the age of 17.

Justice Catherine Muir on Monday dismissed Rowlingson’s application even though he was an “exemplary” prisoner who worked, studied and required little supervision but he had not engaged in adequate psychological treatment.

“(Rowlingson) failed to undertake any of the psychological or psychiatric treatments contemplated by the sentencing court 16 years ago, particularly relating to his profound deficits in empathy,” Justice Muir said.