‘Anger and rage’: Chris Dawson’s daughter opens up about her father in tell-all interview

Oct 06, 2022
Shanelle Dawson has spoken to 60 Minutes in her first public comments in four years where she reveals details about her recently convicted father and circumstances surrounding her mother's disappearance. Source: Getty Images.

The daughter of convicted murderer, Chris Dawson, has opened up about her mother, Lynette’s, disappearance and her feelings toward her father after he was found guilty of his wife’s 1982 murder.

The upcoming interview follows a marathon hearing that ran over four hours on Tuesday, August 31, in which Justice Ian Harrington delivered Dawson’s guilty verdict claiming he was “satisfied” the now 74-year-old resolved to kill his wife.

Justice Harrington accepted earlier in his ruling that Lynette was indeed deceased, believing she did not voluntarily leave her home and family as Dawson has continued to maintain.

In wrapping up the verdict, Justice Harrington said there was no other reason for Lynette’s disappearance than a “conscious and voluntary act committed by Mr Dawson with the intention of causing her death”.

“I find you guilty,” he said.

Dawson has maintained his innocence, pleading not guilty to the murder charges and vehemently denying any involvement in Lynette’s disappearance, claiming she abandoned him and their young children to join a religious group in the Blue Mountains.

As Dawson acclimates to his new surrounding in Sydney’s Silverwater prison, his estranged daughter Shanelle Dawson has spoken to 60 Minutes in her first public comments in four years where she reveals details about her recently convicted father and the circumstances surrounding her mother’s disappearance.

“I believe I saw him shining headlights on a spot near the pool and digging,” Shanelle revealed to 60 Minutes in a clip from the upcoming interview.

“Whatever he said or threatened me with kept me quiet for the next 40 years.”

Later in the clip, Shanelle expressed that she feels “a lot of anger and rage towards him”.

“He was manipulative and gaslighting us,” she said.

While Shanelle reflects on the tragic circumstances of her childhood, Dawson is focused on his fight for freedom after recently filing paperwork to appeal his recent murder conviction.

Dawson’s defence barrister Greg Walsh flagged his client’s intentions to appeal the guilty verdict shortly after the August 31 trial, claiming Dawson was “very upset” by the decision.

“He’s upset, he wanted me to ring his wife Sue and talk to her, we don’t know where he’s going to go (to prison),” Walsh said.

“Mr Dawson has always asserted, and he still does, his absolute innocence and he will continue to assert that innocence and he will certainly appeal.”

Walsh pointed to the “serious death threats by a number of prisoners” that Dawson has been subject to during his time in Silverwater prison as well as a number of health issues that will make jail “much harder for him” while making the case for Dawson’s appeal.

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