News

Fisherman's chilling find at the bottom of Borumba Dam

A sonar scan showing the car under 10 metres of water at Borumba Dam.
A sonar scan showing the car under 10 metres of water at Borumba Dam.

FISHERMAN Terry Allwood had shivers when he learned he had inadvertently done what police had been attempting for more than a decade.

A glimpse at the screen of his electronic depth sounder when idling away from the shore at Borumba Dam has led to a major breakthrough in a 13-year missing person case.

Mr Allwood, of Wondai, was competing in the Basstasstic fishing tournament on March 25 when he made the find.

He was heading out for an afternoon session of competition and had only idled a short distance from shore.

"I saw the shape of it on the panel and went 'sh**, that's a car'," Mr Allwood said.

He immediately marked the position on his GPS and then circled round, using his Lowrance HDS-10 Gen 2 fishfinder to capture different angles of it.

 

Terry Allwood (right) and his father Paul show their catches at Borumba Dam the day after Terry found a submerged car with his electronic depth sounder.
Terry Allwood (right) and his father Paul show their catches at Borumba Dam the day after Terry found a submerged car with his electronic depth sounder. Contributed

Other competitors joined in, with some able to see it and others not.

"I thought 'someone has knocked a car off and just dumped it'," Mr Allwood said.

His wife reported the find to police that evening and an officer came out to the dam to meet them the next day.

The car was about 30m from shore, about 10m below the surface.

Mr Allwood said he wasn't too worried about the find until he got a call from police on Thursday afternoon saying the find was linked to a missing person case.

Police divers and Clayton's Towing had retrieved the same red VL Holden Commodore in which missing person Stuart Gatehouse had last been seen.

There were skeletal remains inside.

"When the guy on the phone said there was a missing person from 2004, I just had goosebumps."

 

Police have not yet confirmed the identity of the remains found.

"I probably would have rather not known," Mr Allwood said.

"It's a really crazy feeling.

"I feel happy the family of old mate can get some closure."

Sunshine Coast Crime Group officer Detective Inspector Dave Drinnen said the State Coroner handed down findings in 2012 that Mr Gatehouse was dead, but had no details on where, when or how his death had occurred.

Mr Gatehouse, from Tasmania, had been living in Kenilworth and was heading north to see a family member when he disappeared.

"His father, who was in Tasmania, he reported him as a missing person, obviously concerned for him that he didn't show up when he was going to visit his brother," Det Insp Drinnen said.

Mr Gatehouse would have turned 58 on Thursday.

"There were no leads back then that someone was responsible for the death of Mr Gatehouse," Det Insp Drinnen said.

"However... we will review the investigation report (and) have a look at that with the new information we now have."

Det Insp Drinnen said police were also hopeful of providing some closure to Mr Gatehouse's family.

"It's something that the family has had to live with for an extremely long period of time."

He said results of forensic examinations being conducted on skeletal remains in the car would need to be finalised before they could confirm whether or not they had found the man missing for 13 years.

He would neither confirm nor deny reports a gun was also retrieved from Mr Gatehouse's car.

"At this stage it is far too early in the investigation to be making any speculation as to who the deceased person that was located in that vehicle," Det Insp Drinnen said.

Anyone with information which they believe could be relevant to the investigation is urged to contact police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

Topics:  borumba dam death editors picks fishing investigation kenilworth missing person police sunshine coast


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Sutherland fronts Crime and Corruption Commission

Allan Sutherland facing the CCC

MORETON mayor Allan Sutherland is facing the CCC

Councillor denies conflict of interest

Moreton Councillor Peter Flannery has denied a conflict of interest after voting on a matter which involved a donor to a trust that gave money to his campaign.

CCC hearing day four: Mayor paid for candidate’s campaign

Auction to help young family battle on against brain disease

TOUGH RUN: Kylie Willis and partner Daniel Cant with their four children in happier times before complications with Kylie's Idiopathic Intracranial Hypertension.

Friends are raising funds to help support Kylie and her family.

Local Partners

Discount fuel not what it seems

MOTORISTS Barbara and Ron Smith have been reminded to always read the fine print - even when making their weekly fuel purchase.

What public holidays are left in 2017

HOLIDAYS: Out and about at Dicky Beach are Janine and Cooper, 3, Smith with Tamara and Harrison Polzin, 18 months.

THE Easter break is almost over but there are plenty of days off yet

Patti Smith: the mother of punk gave Jim Morrison his wings

Patti Smith at Bluesfest 2017 in Byron Bay.

One of the most exhilarating performances in recent Blues history

UPDATED: Patti Smith donates large sum for flood recovery

Patti Smith at Bluesfest 2017 in Byron Bay.

The artist performed two shows at Bluesfest 2017

Dave Hughes almost went too far in Logies monologue

DAVE Hughes destroyed Australia’s A-list in a harsh and hilarious opening monologue at the 59th Annual TV Week Logie Awards.

Mackay lawyer dishes on MKR behind the scenes

Della Whearty from MKR.

Mackay lawyer talks her My Kitchen Rules journey.

Movie review: Going in Style a grey-powered crowd pleaser

Alan Arkin, Morgan Freeman and Michael Caine in a scene from the movie Going in Style.

The tale of three men and a mobility scooter a tad formulaic.

Logies 2017: Meldrum's odd speech as Samuel Johnson wins Gold

Samuel Johnson shows off his Best Actor gong before going onto win the Gold.

Samuel Johnson named Gold Logie Winner of the 59th Annual TV Week Gold Logie...

Logies 2017: Who's taken the coveted gongs?

Kerri-Anne Kennerley poses with the Hall Of Fame Logie Award.

Award winners from Australian television industry's night of nights

Logies 2017: Samuel Johnson dedicates award to sister Connie

Samuel Johnson wins Best Actor at 2017 Logies.

'My sister is succumbing to the perils of cancer': Samuel Johnson

Lisa Curry and fiance sell up Sunshine Coast property

I'm a Celebrity, Get me Out of Here! contestant Lisa Curry with partner Mark Tabone after being evicted from the South African jungle. Picture: Dylan Robinson ***EMBARGOED 7:30pm March 9th***

Plans for dream home on hold at Mount Mellum place on market

What dodgy real estate ads really mean

This dilapidated house was described as an ‘Edwardian timber home, open to your imagination’. That’s a nice way of putting it.

Real estate writing is just outsourced lying, says one writer

SOLD: Iconic M'boro pub set to be transformed

Shane Muller from Maryborough Motorcycles will be opening up a showroom and café at the Shamrock Hotel.

The Shamrock Hotel is set to be transformed in the next two months.

Coast developer looks to prime real estate's future

MANY OPTIONS: Sunshine Coast developer Graeme Juniper is considering what to do with a prime piece of real estate he owns on Radical Bay on Magnetic Island, near Townsville.

Radical Bay is World Environment Heritage-listed.

This small box of a unit just sold for $1 million

Elizabeth Bay unit has charming views to Sydney Heads.

If this doesn't scream 'housing bubble', nothing does.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!