A PARMELIA pensioner has been sentenced to life in prison with an 18-year minimum term after he was convicted in June of murdering his son before the 2016 AFL grand final.
The body of Matthew Kyle Fisher-Turner was uncovered in the backyard of his family’s home in late October 2016 after his father Ernest Albert Fisher, 67, confessed to detectives and told them it was there.
He’d initially claimed his son was “over east” but came clean after one-and-a-half hours of questioning.
The Supreme Court of WA was told Fisher stabbed his son with two knives, puncturing his lung and aorta, about four weeks before the police interview.
The family had been unravelling since the death of its matriarch in 2014, and two of the other children, Joshua Douglas Fisher-Turner and Hannah Jayde Fisher-Turner, also said Matthew had been violent and aggressive.
The court heard the final straw was when Matthew insisted on borrowing his father’s car, which triggered an argument because Fisher wanted to drive to a friend’s house to watch the grand final.
After the killing, he started digging a grave in the rear garden, then left the house to watch the match, leaving it up to Joshua to bury his brother, while Hannah helped carry the body outside on a ladder.
Hannah and Joshua were both convicted of being accessories to murder.
Joshua was sentenced to four years prison but could be out after two years with parole. This was backdated to October 28, 2016.
Hannah was sentenced to three years and eight months, becoming eligible for parole after 22 months. Her sentence will be backdated to October 28, 2016.
Both Hannah and Joshua broke down in court today, while Fisher remained motionless as his sentence was read out.
Judge Stephen Hall said he rejected the argument that Fisher committed the murder to protect his other children and that it was done in self-defence.
“I find it reprehensible that you left them (Joshua and Hannah) to clean up the murder scene and bury their brother without any thought of possible harm to them or consequences later on,” he said.
“Intention to kill is always a significant factor in murder.
“I find that you had an intention to kill that was motivated by hatred and anger towards Matthew.
“It’s disturbing that you could think that killing your child was the only option.”
Fisher’s sentence will be backdated to October 27, 2016.