KILLER dad Arthur Phillip Freeman has been found guilty of murdering his daughter Darcey by throwing her off the West Gate Bridge.
The jury consisting of five men and seven women took five days to reach their verdict.
The father of three, 37, had pleaded not guilty to murder on the grounds of mental impairment.
In his opening address, chief Crown prosecutor Gavin Silbert, SC, said Freeman’s actions were conscious, voluntary and deliberate the day after Freeman lost a custody battle with his ex-wife.
The trial heard from one defence witness, Professor Graham Burrows, who was the only one of six psychiatrists who assessed Freeman to back his mental impairment defence.
Prof Burrows said Freeman was suffering a “major depressive disorder” and was therefore in a “dissociative state” – like a sleep walker or someone who was hypnotised – at the time of the crime.
In rebuttal, the prosecution called two experts – doctors Yvonne Skinner and Douglas Bell.
Dr Skinner told the trial: “There is no evidence to suggest that Mr Freeman was incapable of forming intentions.”
Dr Bell told the jury: “There is no basis in my view for concluding he was in a profound state of dissociation that in any way remotely speaks to the question or infers that he was not engaged in purposeful, willed or voluntary behaviour.”
Freeman was driving his three children back to Melbourne from his parents’ Aireys Inlet home on the morning of January 29, 2009, when he stopped in the emergency lane on the bridge, put his hazard lights on and asked Darcey to move into the front seat.
He then carried his daughter and threw her over the railing.
It was supposed to be Darcey’s first day of school.
Freeman had earlier told his ex wife, Peta Barnes, during a phone call that she would never see her children again.
Freeman will be sentenced at a later date.