"My baby." Mum left baby boy in care of family when he died in hot car, & more in News in 5.

-With AAP.

1. ‘My baby.’ Mum left baby boy in care of family when he died in hot car.

Friends of the mother whose toddler died after being left in a car in Sydney’s west have described her as “heartbroken”.

According to The Daily Telegraph, twenty-two-month-old Jone was found unresponsive inside a car at the front of a Chester Hill home on Sunday afternoon.

Paramedics were unable to revive him and he was pronounced dead at the scene.

Locals say the child’s mother, Samantha Rowlands, could be heard screaming when she returned home to find her son. It’s believed Jone, said to be a twin and the youngest of six children, was left in the care of family while his mother was out.

On Monday, Samantha uploaded a photograph of her son to Facebook with the caption “my baby”.

“Rest In Peace beautiful angel we love u,” one woman replied.

Detectives were told the child was found inside a car at the front of the residence by family members after he couldn’t be located inside the home.

The family released a statement saying: “We are all in shock and devastated with the loss of such a gorgeous, happy little boy. We are all just trying to support Sam the best we can.”

An aunt told 9News she was heartbroken by his death.

“Sam is a good mum, she loves her kids… Heartbroken, I just can’t believe this has happened,” she said.


His grandmother, who lives at the house, was taken to hospital suffering from shock.

Police are preparing a report for the coroner.

2. Two men missing as Qld flood enters day 11.

Two men are missing near floodwaters and thousands of people have been evacuated as north Queensland’s flood crisis rolls into its 11th day.


Hughie Morton, 21, and Troy Mathieson, 23, were last seen on Ross River Road, near floodwaters, on Monday morning.

The pair had not been located by Monday night despite extensive inquiries with family and friends, and a search of floodwaters and the area has begun as a precaution, police say.

Thousands of other people have been evacuated and hundreds of homes inundated by water.

An emergency alert was issued for Bluewater, Bluewater Park, Toolakea and Saunders Beach, northeast of Townsville, early on Tuesday morning. Residents were advised to move to higher ground.

Townsville remains the hardest-hit area although floodwaters are affecting communities as far west as Mt Isa, in the state’s interior.

The one-in-100-year deluge has caused catastrophic flooding as rivers and creeks burst their banks, spilling water through streets and consuming entire suburbs.

The vigorous monsoon trough dumping the rain has begun moving south but it is unpredictable and dangerous conditions are expected to continue for at least the next 24 hours.

Late on Monday, a severe weather warning remained in place from Ingham to Mackay, and west to Cloncurry, although lower than expected rainfall throughout Monday has eased conditions in Townsville.

Water levels in the Ross River Dam dropped to 211 per cent of capacity, down from 250 per cent earlier in the day.


Further heavy rainfall is likely to develop in the severe warning area on Tuesday, however, with six-hourly rainfall totals of between 150mm and 200mm possible, the Bureau of Meteorology said.

“Mackay could get some heavy falls over the next few days with some possibility of flooding,” meteorologist Jess Gardner told AAP.

Inland, the rains have brought “tears of happiness” to the parched outback, where drought conditions had brought many graziers to their knees.

Dry rivers are again flowing where a week ago, it was just dust, Cloncurry Mayor Greg Campbell said.

“It is a great relief to the community. The old timers always say the only way to break a drought is with a flood,” he said.

3. Interview lands Liam Neeson in race row.


Liam Neeson says he’s ashamed to admit he had violent thoughts about killing a black person after learning that someone close to him had been raped.

The Irish actor said he walked the streets armed with a weapon hoping he would be approached by someone so that he could kill them.

Neeson, who will soon be seen in the film Cold Pursuit, was discussing how his character turns to anger when he told UK national newspaper the Independent: “There’s something primal – God forbid you’ve ever had a member of your family hurt under criminal conditions. I’ll tell you a story. This is true.”

He said the rape happened some time ago and he found out about it after he came back from a trip abroad.

He said of his friend: “She handled the situation of the rape in the most extraordinary way.

“But my immediate reaction was… I asked, did she know who it was? No. What colour were they? She said it was a black person.


“I went up and down areas with a cosh, hoping I’d be approached by somebody – I’m ashamed to say that – and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some black bastard would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could kill him.”

Neeson called his reaction “horrible,” saying it taught him a lesson about the “primal need” for revenge.

“It was horrible, horrible, when I think back, that I did that.

“I come from a society – I grew up in Northern Ireland in the Troubles – and, you know, I knew a couple of guys that died on hunger strike, and I had acquaintances who were very caught up in the Troubles, and I understand that need for revenge, but it just leads to more revenge, to more killing and more killing, and Northern Ireland’s proof of that.

“All this stuff that’s happening in the world, the violence, is proof of that, you know. But that primal need, I understand.”

Representatives for Neeson and film studio Lionsgate have been contacted for comment.

4. Mental illness key issue for kids: teachers.

As Australian children get stuck into a new school year their teachers will be primed to detect if they are struggling emotionally.

The vast majority of educators believe mental health issues are a key concern for their pupils but almost half of teachers surveyed say it’s difficult to know when it is appropriate to offer young people support.


A Beyond Blue survey of 431 teachers and early learning educators found 86 per cent think mental health issues are among the top three health concerns for children.

That compares to 65 per cent nominating obesity and 54 per cent who named drug and alcohol abuse.

But nearly half of those surveyed (46 per cent) said it was difficult to know when was the right time to provide support to young people.

Nevertheless, almost two-thirds said they had the confidence to address the mental health needs of their students – although nearly half said they needed tools to help them do so.

The findings come as former prime minister and Beyond Blue chairwoman Julia Gillard returns to her Adelaide high school on Tuesday to mark its participation in a program aimed at helping educators nurture the mental health of their pupils.

Through the program, principals, teachers and early learning educators are given free access to online training and information and can glean advice from 70 expert staff across the country.

Ms Gillard’s alma mater, Unley High School, is among 4400 schools and early learning centres that have signed up to the Be You program since it was launched by Beyond Blue in November.

Ms Gillard says the latest figures show teachers overwhelmingly want to support their students’ wellbeing.


“Educators understand that mentally healthy kids learn better, that academic learning goes hand in hand with social and emotional learning, and that mentally healthy learning communities achieve the best outcomes for everyone – students, staff and families,” she said.

About 560,000 young Australians experience a mental health issue each year with half of all mental health issues emerging before the age of 14.

Beyond Blue chief executive Georgie Harman said that makes it important for people to receive support early, with teachers often being the first to notice when something isn’t right with a child.

Anyone needing support is urged to contact beyondblue (1800 22 4636) or Lifeline on 13 11 14.

5. Man dies after being hit by bus in Sydney.

A 70-year-old man has died after he was hit by a bus while crossing a road in Sydney’s northwest.

Emergency services were called to the intersection of Coleman Ave and Pennant Hills Road, Carlingford just after 7pm on Sunday.

The man was unable to be revived and died at the scene, police say.

The 37-year-old male bus driver was taken to Westmead Hospital for mandatory testing.

Police are continuing inquiries and a report will be prepared for the coroner.