Shawn Adam Newton jailed for life for murder of girlfriend Rebecca Gascoigne

A thug who bound, gagged, and bashed his girlfriend before wrapping her in a rug and throwing her in a car boot to choke to death has been jailed for life.  

Shawn Adam Newton, 45, hog-tied the hands and feet of his lover Rebecca Jane Gascoigne, stuffed a sock in her mouth and assaulted her.

He then rolled her up in carpet, put a bin bag over her head and forced her flatmate Gavin Barr to help him dispose of her body, which was found in the back of a car on Perth‘s Mitchell Freeway in July 2017. 

Newton was sentenced for her murder in the Supreme Court on Tuesday to a non-parole period of 25 years. 

Rebecca Jane Gascoigne (pictured) was bound, gagged and had cling film wrapped around her head when she was found dumped in the boot of a car on a highway

Rebecca Jane Gascoigne (pictured) was bound, gagged and had cling film wrapped around her head when she was found dumped in the boot of a car on a highway

Ms Gascoigne's bound and gagged body was found in the boot of a car on a Perth highway in 2017 (pictured)

Ms Gascoigne’s bound and gagged body was found in the boot of a car on a Perth highway in 2017 (pictured)

Justice Michael Corboy told the court the mother was likely alive ‘for some time’ after her head was covered in plastic. 

‘Your attack on her was sustained and prolonged,’ he said, The West reports. 

‘[She] died in circumstances that can only be described as agonising, prolonged and terrifying.’ 

Ms Gasciogne, a heroin addict who had been working as a prostitute, had only met Newton six weeks before her death.

She had told her daughter she had planned to break up with Newtown and had kicked him out of her Scarborough unit before he savagely assaulted her.

Newton, who continues to maintain his innocence, had tried to blame the killing on Mr Barr throughout his trial, claiming he sexually assaulted Ms Gascoigne before killing her in bushland.

But his accusation was rejected, with Justice Corboy finding Mr Barr was a witness to the murder, and participated in disposing of her body out of fear for his life.  

Shawn Adam Newton (pictured) was sentenced to life in prison in Perth's Supreme Court on Tuesday over the July 2017 murder

Shawn Adam Newton (pictured) was sentenced to life in prison in Perth’s Supreme Court on Tuesday over the July 2017 murder

After Newton left the car to make a phone call,  Mr Barr flagged down nearby police officers  who discovered the body in the boot (pictured)

After Newton left the car to make a phone call,  Mr Barr flagged down nearby police officers  who discovered the body in the boot (pictured)

Police discovered plastic film wrapped around Ms Gascgione's head  (pictured)

Police discovered plastic film wrapped around Ms Gascgione’s head  (pictured)

In his testimony, Mr Barr said after putting Ms Gascgione’s body in the boot, the pair stopped at a beachside carpark in Kallaroo when Newton jumped out to make a phone call.

Mr Barr said he saw the moment as an opportunity to contact authorities, and was about to drive Ms Gasciogne’s body to the Northbridge police station when he saw a patrol unit nearby.

He waved down the officers who came over and discovered her body in the boot. 

Newton then went on the run for ten days before he was arrested wearing a wig as a disguise at a Hillarys pub.  

Defence counsel Terry Dobson said his client maintained that he played ‘no part’  in the murder and would seek an opinion on grounds of appeal.

Ms Gascoigne’s father Steve told reporters outside court that ‘there were no winners’ and he believed justice had not been served.

‘I think he should be executed,’ he said.  

Newtown, who had been in and out of prison since 2007, was convicted of two armed robberies during the ten days he spent evading authorities after Ms Gasciogne’s death.   

He was found guilty of the savage killing during a judge-only trial earlier this year and will become eligible for parole in 2042. 

Newton, in a brown wig, is seen at Northshore Tavern in Hillarys before his arrest

Newton, in a brown wig, is seen at Northshore Tavern in Hillarys before his arrest

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