Emma’s plea: Help find grandmother’s murderer

 THE 20-year-old grand- daughter of murdered Macleay Island widow Lisalotte Watson has issued an impassioned plea for help to solve the crime.

Emma Watson, who lives on Lamb Island, to the south of Macleay, held a media conference on Sunday to beg for the public’s help to solve her grandmother’s murder.

Fighting back tears, Emma said she and her mother, a known recluse, were trying to come to terms with the tragedy.

“Just tell us. Just help out,” she said.

Remembering her grandmother, Emma said she was a beautiful, warm-hearted person with a kind spirit.

She spoke of her grandmother’s passion for gardening and birds, and said the last time she saw her grandmother alive was two weeks ago at the family house where they celebrated her 20th birthday.

“(We talked) about all sorts of things (during my birthday lunch),” she said.

“I’m doing okay, but there’s moments when I’m not. We’ve had a couple of people bring flowers down to the house – everyone’s been saying the community has been really, really good,” she said.

Emma said her mother, Mrs Watson’s daughter, had not brought herself to visit the house.

She said the rest of her family lived in Germany where her grandmother was a nurse during the war.

After the war, Mrs Watson moved to New Zealand and later to Australia.

Emma pleaded with the community for further assistance.

“I’ve tried not to think about it too much really. We’re doing the best we can, considering,” she said.

Police said Mrs Watson died a “violent and unnatural death” and her body was found on the bedroom floor of her Alistair Court home on Tuesday after a friend, Steven Fennell, raised the alarm.

Metro South Detective Superintendent Geoff Sheldon said Mr Fennell was not a suspect despite police arriving at his house with a search warrant on Friday night.

“As part of the continuing cooperation we’ve been getting from the public we executed a search warrant on a house at Macleay Island,” he said.

“It’s just another aspect of the ongoing multiple parallel inquiries we’re running to try and ascertain what’s gone on.”

Mr Fennell delivers flyers and newspapers around the island and was known to frequently check on Mrs Watson’s welfare.

Police also seized a number of his vehicles for scientific examination.

On Saturday, police sifted through tonnes of rubbish from a JJ Richards dump truck that had picked up garbage from the island.

Superintendent Sheldon said after searching through the rubbish “unusual” household linen and clothing were found. We’re taking (the linen and clothing) for scientific investigation to see if they yield any further clues to Mrs Watson’s death,” he said.

SES volunteers and the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue police helicopter joined the search on Thursday to scour the island’s coastline looking for clues.

On Friday, police doorknocked residents on Karragarra and Lamb islands to urge them to come forward if they had seen or heard anything suspicious in relation to Mrs Watson’s death.

A neighbour, Eve,  whose last name has been withheld, said she last saw Mrs Watson collecting her mail at about 10am on Monday.

“She was out getting her mail, I just saw her. It was a normal day,” she said.

“The street looked after her and everyone kept an eye out for her. She was a really wonderful woman.  This is a tragedy, but she should be remembered as a fantastic woman.”

Eve said the first thing she did when she heard of Mrs Watson’s death was to lock all the doors and windows of her home.

“We’re worried now, but at the moment we live in the safest street because of all the police,” she said.

“Police said she died a violent death – stuff like that doesn’t happen here that’s a mainland thing.”

Mrs Watson’s murder  is the first homicide investigation on the island and has brought the biggest police presence since a siege in 2005.

Mrs Watson was known to have lived in an immaculate house, surrounded with beautiful furniture and art work.

It is also believed she was fearful of banks and held large amounts of cash in her home.0

Macleay Island taxi driver Carol Bowen said she was a close friend of Mrs Watson and regularly delivered newspapers to her home.

“The last 12 months she got really depressed,” she said.

“She was a lonely woman and often thanked me for being her friend.

“I knew her for a long time. I knew her husband when he was sick.

“I always used to take the Saturday paper to her, and that’s the last time I saw her, on a Saturday morning.”

Mrs Bowen said she dropped off a newspaper on Monday at about 6.45am.

“I dropped Monday morning’s paper to her and it wasn’t there on Tuesday morning,” she said.

“I don’t know if she collected the paper on Tuesday.”

Mrs Bowen said Mrs Watson slept a lot in her older age but believed she would not have let anybody into her home.

THE 20-year-old grand- daughter of murdered Macleay Island widow Lisalotte Watson has issued an impassioned plea for help to solve the crime.

THE 20-year-old grand- daughter of murdered Macleay Island widow Lisalotte Watson has issued an impassioned plea for help to solve the crime.

Police search rubbish collected from Macleay Island.

Police search rubbish collected from Macleay Island.

The home of Macleay Island widow Lisalotte Watson

The home of Macleay Island widow Lisalotte Watson

Lisalotte Watson

Lisalotte Watson