Man faces murder charge
By LYNDAL GAWEN
A 30-YEAR-OLD Rockhampton man will appear in court today charged with murder after he peacefully negotiated his way out of a 20-hour siege.
Police last night charged him with the murder of Edmund William Payne on Sunday night.
The man walked out of his mother's 67 Knight Street home and into police custody after he communicated with them by telephone that he had had enough.
The call to police came at 2.32pm and within a matter of minutes about six officers, heavily armed and armored, approached the house while the 31-year-old walked towards them.
His hands were cuffed behind his back, he was laid on the ground and searched, then made to kneel while a paddy wagon was arranged to take him back to the station.
The police have been wanting to speak to the man, who can not be identified until he appears in court today, about the murder of Mr Payne.
Mr Payne was killed by a single gunshot wound to the chest on Sunday night on Card Street. Throughout the night the police kept in contact with the man and in an effort to keep him awake rocked the roof and sounded their sirens.
About 9.30am yesterday police let off about 24 stun grenades in an effort to resume communication with the man, who they had not heard from since 7.50am.
Field Commander Inspector David Scott said they had no communication from the man between 7.50am and 2.32pm.
In that time the police had allowed him to sleep in the hope he would wake up calmer.
On waking up the man contacted the police and told them that he wanted to surrender.
Throughout the siege Knight Street and some surrounding roads that lead in the direction of the house were closed.
Five homes in the vicinity of 67 Knight Street were evacuated, but businesses along the Bruce Highway end of the street were accessible to the public, except CSR Readymix. The man's mother left the house on Wednesday night when he attempted to escape through the backyard.
Since that time Inspector Scott said she had been assisting the police who were negotiating with her son.