Australian Idol contestant gets death threats on FB

Joel Turner was featured on the 2003 series of Australian Idol.
Joel Turner was featured on the 2003 series of Australian Idol. Contributed

A URANGAN man who used Facebook to make death threats to a former Australian Idol contestant will spend time behind bars.

Beatboxer Joel Turner, who appeared on the 2003 series of the singing show, was harassed by Damien Michael Dowling in a series of messages through the social media website.

Dowling, 33, used cruel language to call the musician names, threatened to kill, and gave Turner orders which included telling him to stop talking to certain people.

Dowling was sentenced in Hervey Bay Magistrates Court last week for using a carriage service to make a threat to kill.

Joel Turner.
Joel Turner. Rob Williams

Police prosecutor Donna Sperling said Turner grew worried Dowling would act on the threats, because the offender knew where the musician lived.

"(Turner) knew (Dowling) had the knowledge of his family home address," Snr Const Sperling said.

The court heard that Turner told police that the people that Dowling was ordering him to stop talking to, he had not talked to since high school.

Dowling told officers his account had been hacked when questioned on the crime.

His defence lawyer Hamish Isles said Dowling experienced a social media backlash following the verbal attack. Dowling was sentence to three-months imprisonment.

He is currently serving a four-year jail sentence for other offences.

Topics:  crime editors picks fccourt fraser coast hervey bay magistrates court

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