Callum Anthony Padaric Cook: Man charged with murder of rugby icon Russell Klein identified

A man charged with the murder of a local rugby league identity after “deliberately” mowing him down at his property has fronted court for the first time.

Callum Anthony Padaric Cook was charged over the Christmas Day tragedy after Russell Klein, 55, suffered critical injuries and died at the scene.

During a brief appearance at Toowoomba Magistrates Court on Tuesday, Mr Cook had his matter adjourned to February.

He did not apply for bail.

Mr Cook was supported in court by his partner, who left the courthouse in tears and was “beside herself” after the mention.

Police allege Mr Cook “deliberately” drove his car into Mr Klein at his Commens St home in Millmerran, near Toowoomba, about 9.35pm on Sunday.

He is then alleged to have fled, with police locating him at a nearby park.

Mr Cook is facing a single charge of murder and other charges of driving without a licence and possessing weapons, drug utensils and explosives.

Police investigations are continuing and officers have urged anyone with dashcam footage or who witnessed the incident to come forward.

Overnight, tributes have continued to flow for Mr Klein, who was a prominent member of the Toowoomba region’s rugby league community.

He played for teams that included the Millmerran Rams, Inglewood Roosters and the Pittsworth Danes – even rejoining the side to play alongside his sons in 2018.

Mr Klein also took home the grand final trophy for the Danes the age of 44.

“How many blokes get the chance to play footy with their two sons? It’s the best thing you can do,” he told QRL that year.

“That’s what memories are about. Go out with your family and have a laugh and a good time, put some shots on in defence and cop a few back.”

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