The mother of Australia’s worst killer Martin Bryant appeared on 60 Minutes last night. For the first time on television, Carleen Bryant speaks about her son and whether there were any signs that could have indicated that he would go on to kill 35 people – and injure 25 – at Tasmanian town Port Arthur in 1996.
60 Minutes promotes the interview “A Mother’s Burden” with Mrs Bryant as being with“the woman who raised a monster”. Interestingly Mrs Bryant reveals that just three years ago Bryant was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome and that his psychological state was “confidential”.
I can see why the survivors of Port Arthur and their loved ones would be upset by this interview. Mrs Bryant claims in the interview with Charles Wooley (and in her book My Story that I have not read yet) that there was no evidence, besides her son’s confession, that he committed the crime.
“There’s no evidence that Martin was ever there. Martin has always said he was never in Port Arthur at Broad Arrow,” she told Wooley.
Mrs Bryant also expressed regret that she convinced her son to plead guilty as to avoid a trial.
Also interviewed was eminent Forensic Psychiatrist Dr Paul Mullen who spent many hours with Bryant and prepared a report for his legal representative. Dr Mullen is in no doubt of Bryant’s guilt. Mullen says “not in the least” could anyone blame Mrs Bryant for the actions of her child.
“You just have to feel sorry for her,” Mullen told Wooley.