“Police! Stay there, Brett!”
As Queensland Police detectives descended on the clearing at a Kings Road macadamia farm in the Glass House Mountains in 2011, Brett Peter Cowan stood almost nonchalantly, one hand in the pocket of his jeans.
“Brett, we’re investigating the abduction and murder of Daniel Morcombe.”
For nine years, the 49-year-old thought he’d gotten away with killing the Sunshine Coast schoolboy. But footage made public by police on Friday evening shows the moment that all changed.
The clip, which was released with the permission of the 13-year-old’s family, shows Cowan being told his rights by detectives, and later speaking on the phone as they surround him.
He pauses the conversation and asks Detective Senior Sergeant Steve Blanchfield, “I’m under arrest am I?”
Blanchfield says that he is not if he’s willing to speak to them in relation to the matter.
Cowan responds, “Ah, youse can arrest me.”
— Jessica van Vonderen (@jessvanvonderen) April 5, 2019
When Blanchfield says the words, providing the breakthrough in one of Australia’s most high-profile missing persons cases, Cowan addresses the person on the other end of the phone with chilling detachment: “Yep, cool. I’m under arrest for Daniel’s murder… Daniel Morcombe’s murder.”
Daniel’s father, Bruce, described the footage as haunting: “It is haunting, it is difficult to watch, but there it was: a trap that got him,” he told Seven News.