Rowan Baxter plotted to kill other family members, victim's friend claims

A Brisbane dad who killed his estranged wife and their three kids planned on killing other people, a friend of one of the victims says.

Rowan Baxter killed his wife Hannah Clarke, 31, and her three kids Aaliyah, 6, Laianah, 4, and Trey, 3, on Wednesday morning in Camp Hill.

He doused the four in fuel and set them alight before taking his own life.

But Ms Clarke’s friend Nikki Brooks told The Australian Baxter planned on killing more people.

“Hannah had told me that he had a rope and something in his car,’’ Ms Brooks told The Aust­ralian.

Rowan Baxter killed his estranged wife and their three kids. Source: Facebook

Ms Brooks claims Baxter planned on killing an ex-partner and their son Isaiah who was about seven or eight at the time.

“He’d prepared what he needed to kill Isaiah and (Isaiah’s mother) and then didn’t do it,” Ms Brooks told the paper.

“I knew he had it in him. I just thought, hopefully, any person would be able to pull themselves back.”

She also claims Baxter “lost his mind and nearly beat someone to death” during a road rage incident.

Ms Clarke’s father Lloyd told A Current Affair Isiah had been estranged from Baxter, who caused him permanent emotional damage, for several years.

Isaiah is now 22 and reached out to the Clarke family following the deaths.

Hannah Clarke with her daughters Aaliyah, 6, and Laianah, 4. Source: Facebook

“His appalling parenting caused irreversible damage to my mental health. If I could take the place of Laianah, Aaliyah, and Trey I would in a heartbeat,” Isiah’s message to Mr Clarke said.

Manja Whaley, a friend of Ms Clarke, detailed how the dad portrayed himself as a loving father and doting husband online - a vastly different character to his true identity.

The Clarke family claim Baxter was a controlling and manipulative man.

The car where Baxter ambushed his family. Source: Reuters

Ms Clarke’s mum Suzanne claims her daughter wasn’t allowed to wear a bikini or shorts despite working in the fitness industry.

She told A Current Affair Baxter “was evil” and “it was Rowan’s way or the highway”.

Baxter’s cousin Sandra Taylor told Nine News the killer had a skewed view of women, and viewed them as one of two things - a house cleaner or a prostitute.

Family members of Baxter have also since claimed they feel guilty “just knowing” the killer.

Baxter has been described as manipulative and controlling. Source: Facebook

Readers seeking support and information about suicide prevention can contact Beyond Blue on 1300 22 4636, Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.

If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit 1800RESPECT.org.au.

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