Steven Fennell acquitted of elderly woman’s murder on Macleay Island in 2012


September 11, 2019 18:09:07

The High Court has quashed the conviction of a man jailed for life over the murder of 85-year-old Liselotte Watson in 2012.

Steven Fennell was charged after Ms Watson was found dead in her bed with head injuries from a blunt object on Macleay Island, off Brisbane, in November that year.

The pair had been friends and he had done some odd jobs for her.

It was Mr Fennell who first called police.

He was convicted on a circumstantial case of her murder and sentenced to life in jail in 2016.

But he argued the court should have considered the alternative that Ms Watson was killed in a botched robbery by someone else.

Mr Fennell was a junk mail delivery man on the island.

His lawyers argued he was convicted “an obviously weak case” by a jury that had seen prejudicial transcripts showing he had been in prison before for other offences.

But today during a hearing into the case in Canberra, the High Court unanimously allowed his appeal, quashed his conviction and entered an acquittal.











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