Masatora admits to nurse manslaughter

Glenn CordingleyBroome Advertiser
The man has been jailed for seven years.
Camera IconThe man has been jailed for seven years. Credit: Getty Images

A Broome man who started a relationship with a married mother-of--four in the Kimberley town and followed her to Victoria has been jailed for seven years for bashing her to death.

Lindsay Masatora, 57, previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter and appeared in the Supreme Court of Victoria for sentencing.

He met Amanda Dawson, 56, at a Broome hotel in March 2015.

The court was told Ms Dawson started a six-month nursing contract at Derby District Hospital in October 2014, and that her husband was “intermittently” in that town with his wife.

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She returned to the family home near Traralgon in April 2015 and Dawson moved to transient hostel accommodation in Melbourne a month later.

Masatora was driven to a train station by her husband and told never to return, about a month later when he was caught hiding in a spare bedroom of the family home.

Despite this, he continued communicating with the woman through phone messages.

In sentencing, Justice Terence Forrest said the texts provided “some insight” in his commitment to Ms Dawson and her ambivalence about continuing the relationship.

“I do not propose to recite all of the SMS exchanges; however, it is apparent that Ms Dawson, at times, is firm that she wants the relationship to end,” he said.

“At other times she expresses her love for you.”

Justice Forrest said that at one time Ms Dawson messaged him saying “You don’t know what it is like leading two lives”.

“This ambivalence and obvious angst persisted right up until the morning of your fatal assault on her,” he said.

Ms Dawson drove into a carpark in Traralgon on October 10, 2016, and Masatora was seen walking around the area shortly afterwards.

The front passenger door of the vehicle was open and Justice Forrest said it appeared Ms Dawson was beckoning Masatora to return to the vehicle.

Almost an hour later he was seen to be behaving angrily and shouting while standing next to the vehicle.

“Shortly after this, you struck Ms Dawson twice to the head,” Justice Forrest said.

The blows caused a fracture of the left cheekbone, bruising over the left jaw, an acute subdural haematoma and associated head injuries.

“After some hesitation, as Ms Dawson lost consciousness, you telephoned 000,” the judge said.

She died on October 13, 2016.

Justice Forrest said Masatora’s actions were not premeditated and the consequence of an outburst of anger likely from Ms Dawson either proposing to discontinue the relationship or failing to resolve it.

He said Masatora came from a large stable and happy family in Broome. His father was a Japanese pearler and his mother an Aboriginal woman who grew up in Lombadina Mission at Cape Leveque on Dampier Peninsula.

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