Ross Streeter due to be sentenced today, but answers may never come

THE farm at Streeter Lane, Natte Yallock, is still there.

The machinery sheds, grain augers, tractors and sheep yards all remain on the 1600 hectare property.

The road sign, bearing the name of the family who lived on the patch of land for generations, is still there.

But the men who worked it are gone.

Doug and John Streeter were killed on March 14 this year. Doug's son Ross is due to be sentenced for their murder today.

We know Doug was battling motor neurone disease. We know it was terminal.

We know that when the family was given the news in January, Ross came to work with his father and uncle on the property he grew up on as a child.

We know that Ross and John didn't always see eye-to-eye, but maintained a working relationship nonetheless.

We know that Doug and John had agreed to give Ross a one-third share of the farm, before drawing up new wills on February 13.

We know that Ross used a shotgun kept on the farm to shoot his father and uncle.

But what we don't know is why.


Ross Streeter. PICTURE: THE AGE

In court, Ross has maintained that he doesn't know why he did it. He says he can't remember the killings beyond some "yelling" at his dad.

The murders have puzzled a town and a state.

The Avoca area is small enough that even a plan for a local footballer to change clubs doesn't stay secret for long.

So when a double murder occurs, the news spreads like fire.

The bodies of the respected farming brothers were found in the late afternoon. By morning, there wasn't anyone in Natte Yallock, Avoca or surrounds who hadn't heard of the tragedy.

Metropolitan news crews swarmed outside the farm, asking things like: "A merino is a sheep, yeah?"

Locals were asking just one question: "Why?" 

In the following days, those first shocked questions became increasingly louder demands for answers.

Those answers, even through the entire court process, have not come.

Today we should receive the news about Ross Streeter's punishment.

We may never find out his motivation.

jordan.oliver@fairfaxmedia.com.au

@JordanHOliver

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