Joshua Barrett (2013-2016)
Parents: Johnny (deceased) & Debbie Barrett
Siblings: Andy Barrett & Casey Braxton (deceased) (both half)
Marital Status: Evelyn MacGuire (2016, engaged)
Occupation: Student; Pizza Deliverer
Josh met Maddy Osborne at Heath and Bianca’s wedding reception and didn’t seem bothered that she couldn’t remember his name. Casey was concerned about them spending time together but Josh and his friends took Maddy away. Casey tracked them down and stopped Maddy having drunken sex with Josh. Josh’s brother Andy encouraged Josh to attack Casey, but when Josh came off worse he stopped Andy going for Casey. He was shocked when Andy ran Casey and Maddy off the road but fled the scene with him.
A few days later, Maddy saw Josh and Andy around town and tipped off Brax. He attacked Andy and then Josh when he intervened, forcing Bianca and Maddy to step in. Maddy then overheard Andy threatening Josh into keeping quiet, after which she began defending him and spending time with him. When Alf found out, he reported him to the police, but he was released since they were only interested in Andy. He tried to convince Andy to turn himself in and instead found himself thrown out of the house. Brax threw him out of the hospital when he apologised to Casey, but later apologised for his behaviour and was shocked to learn Josh was the son of Johnny Barrett, an old friend of his father Danny who had disappeared around the same time Danny went to jail. Josh shared a kiss with Maddy on the beach and walked her home, only to be attacked by Spencer who thought he was harming her.
Brax took him for breakfast when he found him sleeping on the beach but Josh clammed up when he started asking him about his family. After Maddy failed to convince Alf to let Josh stay in one of the caravans, Brax invited him to stay. However, he felt uncomfortable with Casey there and when Andy rang up to warn him about Brax, it prompted Maddy to hide him in her room. Marilyn found out he was there and told Alf and Roo, prompting Alf to throw him out. Maddy went with him and they hid out at Mangrove River High.
When he got a call from Andy saying that Brax had confessed to killing their father and getting Adam Sharpe to hide the body, Josh sent Maddy home and went to the court house, where he was shocked to find Andy was planning to kill Brax. Josh tried to talk him out of it but then they discovered their mother Debbie had taken the gun. Josh ran in front of her as she tried to shoot Brax and took the bullet in the shoulder. He was rushed into theatre and the operation went well. Nate convinced him to see Ricky, who told him she’d stand by him with Debbie and Andy both in jail.
While Maddy was visiting him, Senior Sergeant Emerson turned up to question them about the arson at Mangrove River High, which happened shortly after they were there. Maddy lied that she had been with Josh the whole time and annoyed him by asking him if he was involved. Roo told him he was only bringing trouble to Maddy so he broke up with her. He refused to see her and then disappeared from the hospital. He went to Ricky, who called Nate and Hannah, but supported his desire not to go back to hospital and insisted they treat him there. She convinced Josh to call Maddy, who agreed to get back with him in return for him going back to hospital.
When he was discharged, he went to stay with the Stewarts, who got him to attend Summer Bay High. He found himself the target of jibes from Mangrove River students Matt Page and Rico Tubbs for wearing the Summer Bay uniform and also from Jade Montgomery, the former principal who had expelled him from Mangrove River and now worked at Summer Bay. He got into a fight with Matt, and Andy came to his rescue, having been let off with a good behaviour bond. Andy tried to get Josh to go back to Mangrove River with him but Josh refused. Heath dragged him to see Andy when he was stabbed by a cellmate he had informed on, and Josh agreed to move into a motel with him.
Andy began manipulating Josh’s feelings towards Maddy, convincing him she only saw him as a project and prompting him to tell her that he couldn’t be the person she wanted him to be. He walked out of school when Montgomery bullied him in class; Maddy tried to appeal to him but he wasn’t able to stand up to Andy. However, he still intended to go back to school and make things up with her. He was pleased when Maddy turned up to a beach party until she started dancing with Matt. He realised Andy had spiked Maddy’s drink and looked after her until she came to her senses, but when she realised what had happened and that he hadn’t told her, she walked away in disgust. Josh punched Andy and encouraged Maddy to go to the police, but when she did so he lied to them and covered for Andy. However, he also told Andy they were finished and he wouldn’t have any more to do with him. When Andy told Maddy, she and Josh made up.
When Alf found out what happened, he tried to keep Josh away from the house again but eventually relented on condition he kept Andy away and invited him round for a barbeque. Josh and Maddy convinced Roo to let them attend the Bay Meets the River music festival together, claiming they’d be sleeping in separate tents, which was untrue. Josh remained silent when Matt made crude remarks about Maddy, but after he and Maddy slept together for the first time in their tent, he told Matt to shut up. The teens returned to town where Josh made peace with Spencer.
He sneaked into the school with Sasha, Spencer and Maddy to spend time together and began talking with Andy again. Maddy was unhappy, with the result that Josh didn’t stick up for Andy when John had a go at him in the surf club, but afterwards Maddy told him she wouldn’t stand between them. He was pleased when Andy took a job at the gym but then found out that Sean Green, the cellmate Andy had informed on, was in town and trying to force Andy to change his statement. Andy wanted Josh to join him in confronting Sean but Maddy talked him out of it. He gratefully accepted Casey’s offer of shelter after Andy was attacked but this left Maddy as Sean’s main target. Josh disregarded Andy’s instructions to go and check on her and was relieved when Sean was arrested.
With the brothers hard up and Alf needing rent on the caravan, Josh considered dropping out of school and getting a job. When Andy gave him some money, he assumed it was stolen and was furious, until Andy explained Casey had given him an advance on his wages. He was jealous when Spencer and Maddy supported each other after Harvey left. He ended up arguing with Maddy and told Andy he wanted to leave town. He agreed to help Sasha with her school captain campaign as a Mangrove River representative, only to find that she only wanted him around for show and wasn’t interested in his ideas. As a result, he ended up conspiring with Matt and Jett to teach her a lesson. He and Matt dumped Sasha in the middle of nowhere, nearly causing her to miss giving her speech, and afterwards Josh and Maddy made up.
He learned Brax had been released from jail but Andy was more interested in spending time with new girlfriend Hannah than explaining to him and he was left sleeping on Alf’s couch to give them room. He asked Brax and Ricky for help in finding out where Adam, who had really killed Johnny, had hidden the body. When the city police located his remains, Josh tried to get Andy to take him there, then tried hitchhiking before Brax agreed to give him a lift. In the end, Andy joined him in collecting Johnny’s belongings, including a photo of a child that Josh assumed was himself. He asked Casey to join him in scattering the ashes where Johnny used to take him fishing and after initial reluctance Andy joined him. He was puzzled when the photograph disappeared soon after and embarrassed when Alf walked in on him and Maddy about to get intimate on the couch. Maddy tried to help him study for a test but instead he got a copy of the answers off Evelyn: Zac caught him cheating in class and found out about the other cheats, giving them all ten thousand word essays and making the entire class retake the exam.
Josh overheard Maddy mentioning Spencer had kissed her and got into an argument with her over it, then was upset when she started spending time with Oscar. He eavesdropped on a conversation between Brax and Andy and found out Casey was his half-brother, the photograph actually being of Casey. Andy and Ricky convinced him not to say anything but Casey found out and, when Josh went to see him at the gym, told him to leave. Josh turned to Maddy and spent the night with her but was caught in her room by Alf. Josh tried to be honest with Alf, admitting he and Maddy were already sleeping together, but Alf responded by banning him from the house. Marilyn attempted to organise a mediation session which just left everyone embarrassed and Alf eventually acknowledged they were old enough to do what they wanted.
Phoebe invited him and Maddy to have dinner with the Braxtons but Kyle felt it was too soon and instead suggested the four of them go for a picnic. When Andy saw Josh and Kyle talking, he tried to get Josh to leave town. Josh considered going but Maddy and Kyle talked him out of it. He was again rebuffed by Casey but they later made moves towards coming to terms with things. He found himself caught in the crossfire when Alf stopped Maddy spending time with him because he wanted her to do schoolwork. Maddy convinced him to skip school with her but he didn’t like the idea of sleeping with her in Alf’s house so they went to the surf club, where Josh ended up an embarrassed observer to a confrontation between Alf and Maddy. He walked away from Maddy when her insolence got too much, and she later admitted she had been causing trouble so Roo would come back and apologised. He despaired when Andy was unable to get his job back after falling out with Casey.
When Maddy organised a party at the surf club, Josh said he couldn’t go because he needed to study and overheard her telling Spencer she thought his attitude was selfish. He admitted to Alf he was having a hard time studying. Alf advised him to tell Maddy and he went to the party intending to do that but Matt talked him out of it and he let Maddy think he just hadn’t wanted to go to the party. When Maddy again wanted to spend time with him while he was trying to study, he claimed he had to do something with Andy and she was upset to find him alone at the Diner. Sasha offered to let him study at the gym office but Maddy walked in on them joking about her being self-absorbed. When Maddy realised what was going on, she organised a study group with the two of them, Spencer and Evelyn, although her memory techniques failed to help him.
He and Evelyn were told to do portraits of themselves for an art assignment but decided to do each other; after a lot of struggle, Josh did a digital composition of Evelyn and said it showed she was always there. Maddy told him Evie had a crush on him but when he asked her about it she denied it. He did well at the exam but fell out with Maddy when she was too focused on her own poor showing to be happy for him. However, after admitting to Evelyn that he still loved her, he met Maddy on the wharf and they reunited.
When Roo was hospitalised, Josh found himself ignored by Maddy and instead spent time with Evelyn. When they found a stray horse near her family’s farm, they took it back to her neighbour together and shared a kiss. He shared a second kiss with her at the bus stop and seemed set to leave Maddy for her, until an outraged John and Marilyn, who had witnessed the kiss, reminded him of everything Maddy had done for him and he told Evelyn he couldn’t leave her. He went back to supporting Maddy when Roo had to be operated on.
However, it was Evelyn he asked for help in finding Andy when Spencer and Chris found drugs underneath their caravan, although he later told her to stay out of it. He gave the drugs back to Andy, then when Andy was arrested he blamed Spencer and punched him. When Andy disappeared after being released and Chris revealed he was the one who spoke to the police, Josh suggested they put it behind them. Maddy refused to talk to him when she was told she had to repeat a year and he told Sasha he felt Maddy only saw him as a project. He seemed set to break up with her again until she apologised for her behaviour. He was allowed to stay at the caravan park when Andy was thrown out.
When Evelyn told Maddy it was her own fault she had to repeat, Josh took Evelyn’s side. He then turned up at Evelyn’s house injured, having been beaten up by Andy’s suppliers. He was angry that Andy had let Hannah and Oscar believe that Zac was the one with drugs. When Maddy accused him of cheating on her with Evelyn, he admitted it was true, then told Evelyn she was the one he wanted to be with and kissed her. Casey invited him to move in with the Braxtons to keep him safe from Andy’s associates but he refused to stay off school. Andy was then beaten up and Josh went to Brax for help. He ended up hiding out at the farm with Casey, Evelyn, Denny and Hannah, where he and Evelyn spent the night in the same bed and he convinced her to forgive Hannah for staying with Andy. He and Evelyn were then kidnapped by drug dealers led by Cody Dalton and he was forced to leave a message for Andy. Andy reappeared in time to pay them off and revealed he had made enough money from dealing to get their own place but Josh refused to move in with him.
He felt excluded by the bond between Brax and Casey, so Denny and Evelyn arranged for the two of them, Josh and Casey to spend the evening together so the brothers could bond. Afterwards, Josh spent the night on the sofa so Evelyn could have his bed. Evelyn told him she wasn’t ready to sleep together and he assured her he was fine with it. He met up with Andy but walked out on suspecting he was still dealing. He became friendly with Maddy again and was pleased when Brax got him to help fix a car and offered to teach him to drive. He was initially upset when Evelyn admitted she wasn’t happy about him spending time with Maddy. When the Year 11s were invited to the school formal, Josh was reluctant to go and eventually admitted to Evelyn that he was embarrassed that he couldn’t afford proper formal clothes; she told him she didn’t mind if he came as he was and he agreed to go with her. However, Denny and Casey insisted he needed to dress up and helped him pull an outfit together. As he was on his way back from picking up his suit, he was knocked out and kidnapped by men working for Jake Pirovic, who Andy had been working for and who had a grudge against Brax. Held hostage by Jake, he was rescued by Casey and Andy but then saw Casey shot.
He and Andy were sent away by Kyle and took refuge at the farmhouse with Evelyn and Oscar. When the news arrived that Casey had died, Josh blamed Andy and walked away from the house. He was found by Maddy on the beach and she took him back to her place to give him somewhere quiet. There, he slept with her, then told her it was a mistake and she was to keep quiet. When Evelyn asked Maddy to speak to him, he turned her away. After the funeral, he told Evelyn what had happened, resulting in her attacking Maddy at the wake. Josh attempted to win Evelyn over but she refused to accept his excuses. He assured her it wasn’t because she wouldn’t sleep with him but they seemed no closer to sorting things out. When she complained that he hadn’t confided in her when Jake was murdered, he sent her away. However, he accepted when Evelyn asked to be friends, while rejecting a similar offer from Maddy. He realised Andy had murdered Jake and gave him a false alibi, then helped Ricky clear out Casey’s room.
He got friendly with Evelyn on an art excursion but became jealous when she spent time with art tutor Cal Jackson. They got into an argument but at Oscar’s urging he managed to win her round with a sketch he’d done of her. He kissed her but she ran off afterwards. After getting advice from Phoebe, he arranged a romantic picnic and was rewarded with a kiss. However, Oscar told him to talk to Maddy and he learned she was pregnant with his child. He told Evelyn, while Roo put the hard word on him to be there for Maddy. Evelyn told him that things would be too hard with a baby and broke up with him. When Andy reacted badly to the news of the pregnancy, Josh worried he would end up like his father but Ricky reassured him. However, he stressed to Maddy that they wouldn’t be a couple again. Evelyn invited him to a party at the beach house but when she refused to let him talk about the baby he walked out. He had trouble finding a part-time job and considered quitting school but both Andy and Maddy talked him out of it and Andy offered to support them. He and Maddy started buying baby clothes together but Oscar told him that he, rather than Josh, might be the father and Josh told Maddy they were done until she found out the truth.
He and Oscar both went to the hospital with Maddy when she went to have an ultrasound and waited outside. Maddy revealed she wasn’t pregnant but Hannah explained that Maddy hadn’t been lying; tests had incorrectly shown she was. Josh began to get his life back on track, cancelling a TAFE application and rejoining school. Brax told him to think about getting back with Evelyn and after they’d spent the evening together at Angelo’s they met on the beach and kissed. However, when John mentioned Maddy had had surgery, he went to the house and overheard Alf and Roo saying Maddy had cancer, which had caused the false test results; he left Maddy a message asking her to see him and cancelled his date with Evelyn, telling her it wasn’t the right time to get back together. Maddy refused to speak to him and he had to use Oscar as a go-between. When he finally spoke to Maddy, they admitted that they once loved each other but she told him she wasn’t his responsibility anymore and to move on. Brax convinced him to go after the coach Evelyn was on but they saw it crash shortly before they collided with Nate’s car.
He suffered only minor injuries and reunited with Evelyn at hospital, comforting her when she learned Hannah might never walk again. Trying to cheer her up, he went to the surf club and painted a mural on the side but was caught by Chris, earning himself a fine and a telling off from Kyle. However, Evelyn was pleased with the result and Josh led a protest to stop it being washed off. Alf convinced him to stand down, at which point he revealed he had photographed it anyway. John then asked him for advice on making a sculpture for Marilyn. He was initially frustrated when Evelyn decided to help Spencer with a fundraiser for teenagers with cancer instead of accompanying him to a party for Brax but eventually went to help himself, although they both came to regret it when Spencer gave them a long list of tasks. He passed his driving test, then took Evelyn out for a spin in the car. They made out in the back, at which point she told him she wanted to go all the way. He turned her down, not wanting her first time to be in the back of a car, and reluctantly asked advice from Matt on how to make it special. He set up his room with flashing balloons and when Evelyn came round they slept together for the first time.
He was initially annoyed when he discovered Andy had taken Hannah out in a boat despite her being confined to a wheelchair but accepted he was well-meaning. He learned that Andy was having difficulty studying for his fitness instructor’s exams because he had reading trouble and agreed to help him. He went to Angelo’s looking for work and was given a trial shift delivering pizzas when Matt didn’t show up. When Matt got upset, he offered to give up the job but instead Matt quit. He joined Evelyn in trying to help Matt, who had started drinking heavily. He overheard them discussing the fact that Matt had kissed her and forgave Evelyn but not Matt, bickering with him during the Anzac Day excursion and coming to blows when they had to spend the night in a trench. However, after they’d worked together to help an ill Alf, he placed a blanket over him. Jett roped him into his Anzac Day commemoraton, getting him to make a sculpture in the shape of a sun. He followed Evelyn to Mangrove River to look for Matt where they found him getting drunk, and the conversation came to an abrupt end when Josh called him a loser like his father and Matt fell over trying to punch him.
After Matt had sorted himself out, Josh worried when Evelyn got him to study with Maddy, since he feared they might get together. However, Evelyn decided to try and arrange exactly that. He reluctantly joined her in trying to set them up with a romantic movie and a camping trip before telling Matt what was going on. Maddy was upset when she found out but Josh and Evelyn made it up to her by surprising her at hospital for a study date. As careers talks came round, he considered studying architecture. On his 18th birthday, he received a call from the prison asking him to speak to Debbie. He turned up at Angelo’s to find Evelyn had prepared a surprise party but walked out. He admitted to Andy that he was upset that Debbie had spent years promising a big 18th and never delivered, but Andy convinced him to go back to the party. He was upset by the news Brax had been declared dead.
He set up motion control cameras around the Bay for a school project and recorded a conversation between Hannah and her ex Sean Gleeson revealing she had cheated on Andy with him. He gave the recording to Andy and was angry to learn that Evelyn had known. He tried to stop Andy drink driving and ended up flagging down the new teacher, Charlotte King, to track him down; they found him passed out at the wheel. Andy reminded him how many times he had covered for him and he forgave Evelyn. They attended Jett’s farewell party together.
He missed meeting the other teens to concentrate on studying and, at a uni day open day, met Damo Adams, who talked to him about artificial stimulants. When Matt, Maddy and Evelyn made a noise while he was studying, he ordered them out of the house, then fell asleep over his laptop for the second night running. He went to Damo but when Oscar caught him taking the pills Evelyn forced him to flush them. He went to Evelyn’s place to apologise but disturbed an intruder and was pushed down the stairs. He refused to go to hospital, admitting to Andy that he had drugs in his system. When Hunter turned up, Josh ignored suspicions that he was the one that attacked him, saying Hunter had enough problems already. Despite his earlier problems, he bought more drugs from Damo but they made him feel ill and he learned from Matt that Damo made them himself. He threatened to report Dano to the police but Damo said he’d take him down with him. When Evelyn told him that a student was in hospital after taking one of Damo’s pills and that he had threatened her, Josh went to Kat and told her everything. However, Damo eluded the police and turned up at Josh’s with a cricket bat. Josh tried to talk him down, as did Kat when she arrived, but in the confusion Kat was shot, although Damo was arrested soon after. Evelyn then broke up with Josh.
He got a high mark in his test scores, but Greg Snelgrove told him that because of his drug taking not only would he get zero but he would be expelled. He was prepared to give up on school but a pep talk from Andy convinced him to look at other ways of doing his HSC. He was surprised to receive a load of brochures on the subject which neither he, Andy nor Evelyn had applied for (in fact, Greg had sent them). Evelyn helped him prepare an application but rejected his offer to stay for dinner. Matt took him along to a party Chris was throwing but he left after arguing with Evie. After they had attended the town’s Ed Sheeran concert, they exchanged apologies and wished each other luck with the HSC. He managed to get into his HSC course with a deeply personal drugs video. After his first day there, he told Matt about a disruptive student, Tank Snelgrove, only to find him dating Evelyn. He told Evelyn that he was a loser but Evelyn dismissed his opinion. She refused to believe him when he told her Tank had made laddish comments about her and he made a fool of himself when he went for Tank, mistaking his gestures while telling Evelyn a story for him attacking her. When the other teens met Tank and liked him, Josh agreed to back off.
Matt told him he was sleeping with Charlotte and Josh went to confront her but she threatened to ruin him; Matt didn’t believe him when he told him. Charlotte then accused him of sending threatening notes. He inadvertently revealed that Maddy didn’t like Oscar’s birthday present and tried to stop Tank and his friends trashing her party. He tried to be there for Evelyn when her other friends turned their backs on her as a result. After she had run away with Tank, she sent Josh a message with her location. He found her hiding in the woods and took her home. That night, he saw Tank in the caravan park and followed him but Tank hit him on the back of the head and he spent the night lying unconscious before being found by Ash. He was rushed to hospital where it was found he had a bleed on his brain, and even though it was removed he showed no improvement. When there was no increase in brain activity after a few days, the doctors advised turning off life support. However, he moved his hand just as they were about to do so.
At his next scan, he showed a slight improvement and soon after he opened his eyes, although scans suggested he was still in a vegetative state. Although he began to recover, he was left blind and wrote “YOUR FAULT” when Evelyn came to visit him. He sent Maddy and Oscar away when they came to visit and, when Evelyn refused to leave, because increasingly agitated until she had to be removed. He also sent Andy away when he tried to plead Evelyn’s case. He spoke for the first time to tell Andy he was scared but sent him away when he tried to give him podcasts from Evelyn. When he returned home, Andy tried to convince him to go to the school formal but he burned his hand cooking spaghetti and insisted on staying at home. Hannah tried to get through to him and she and Andy convinced him to go out for a walk, but he was unnerved by the unfamiliar cacophony of noise and told Andy he should have let him die, feeling lost without his art and his dreams of becoming an architect. He did, however, managed to join Andy in supporting the MacGuires when the news of Denny’s death broke. He learned that Charlotte was threatening to reveal Andy had killed Jake and he was an accessory.
A few days later, Andy walked in on Josh using his phone and Josh told him he had just regained his sight. Both Andy and Evelyn were delighted but celebrations were cut short when Josh saw a message on Evelyn’s phone and learned she and Andy had kissed. He brushed aside their apologies and told them he was leaving town for good. He was accepted into Northern Districts and Andy moved out to convince him to stay. He was pressganged into babysitting Casey and invited a few uni friends over, then ended up sleeping with one of them, Louisa O’Brien, unaware she had turned down Casey’s baby monitor. Casey was subsequently hospitalised with viral meningitis, prompting an angry reaction towards Josh from both Kyle and Ricky, as well as a lecture from Oscar over his recent behaviour. He agreed to Andy moving back in and tried to apologise to Evelyn but found her in a tense mood and alerted Leah. He invited her to a party during orientation week where they reunited after he learned she had had a breast cancer scare.
He helped her and Oscar get the house ready for Hannah’s return after her double mastectomy and joined them in welcoming Zac back when he was released from remand. He tipped Billie off to the fact that VJ was pretending to date Skye to make her jealous and convinced Ash to take Matt back on as an apprentice once it became clear that the vandalism of the garage was not his fault. He and Evelyn took Matt and Maddy to a hotel in the city to cheer them up, where he and Evelyn became engaged after he proposed to her with a makeshift ring made from champagne wire. However, on their return home they learned that Zac was helping Tank, who he had been in prison with, to get parole. Josh went to the hospital, where Tank had been taken after being stabbed, and attacked him, and was furious when, after being paroled, Tank turned up at his and Evelyn’s engagement party with Skye, having to be held back from attacking him again. He wanted to report him for breaking his parole but Zac and Evelyn talked him out of it. However, when he learned Tank had confessed to still having feelings for Evelyn, he tried to intimidate him into leaving. He and Oscar warned Tank not to attend a hospital fundraiser, before Josh complained to Andy and Evelyn about Tank being allowed to go. When the fundraiser was hit by an explosion, Josh disappeared for some time, reappearing to comfort Evelyn when Oscar was found dead.
Kat then confronted him after realising he was Charlotte’s killer. He admitted that he had regained his sight that night and followed Kyle and Andy when they went looking for her. He had confronted Charlotte and tried to talk her out of reporting Andy but she had drawn a gun and in a struggle it had gone off: He had pretended to be blind and kept quiet when people were accused and jailed, convincing himself they would be cleared eventually. He asked Kat to keep quiet so he could support Evie. Kat agreed, especially when Hannah died too, but warned him that when Evie got better she’d come for him, a fact she reminded him of at the pair’s wake. In the aftermath of the funeral, Evelyn asked him to marry her the next day. After a certain amount of deliberation, he agreed but Zac and Leah interrupted the ceremony and convinced them not to get married while they were grieving.
Skye told him and Evelyn that Andy had caused the explosion and he restrained Evelyn from attacking him, immediately forgiving him on learning it had been an accident. He struggled to support both Andy and Evelyn and also Maddy when she was released from hospital after losing an arm in the explosion. When Matt and Maddy were planning to leave, Josh promised Evelyn he wasn’t going anywhere. Kat asked him how Evelyn was, and when Evelyn told him she was only fine as long as she had him he passed the information along. However, after Evelyn invited him to a caravan for alone time to thank him, he confessed to her that he’d killed Charlotte. He was immediately grabbed by Andy, who told him Kat was out to arrest him and tried to get him to go on the run but Josh refused, saying he was going to talk to Evie and then turn himself in. However, when he and Evie went to the police station they found Andy had confessed. Evelyn convinced him to keep quiet, even when Kat confronted him, and when he visited Andy his brother refused to change his mind.
He had to face Hunter accusing him of knowing what Andy had done, then lost it with Mason when he saw him doodling on Andy’s picture. Evelyn took him camping to take his mind off Andy’s bail hearing, but when Evelyn got testy about him trying to get information on Andy, he angrily accused her of wanting Andy punished, prompting her to admit she was scared of him. He was then arrested by Kat and Sergeant McCarthy for providing Andy with a false alibi for Jake’s murder. Kat told him Hunter had stabbed Andy, thinking he killed Charlote, and nearly got him to confess, but after a chat with Evelyn he merely confessed to the false alibi and was charged as an accessory and kept in remand until his bail hearing. Evelyn paid his bail but Brody Morgan, the new owner of Angelo’s, was reluctant to let him return to work and he ended up losing it when Evelyn and Matt acted as if nothing had changed.
He told Evelyn he couldn’t let Andy take the blame and they accepted things were over, after which he recorded a conversation between himself and Andy that confirmed he was the real killer and gave it to McCarthy, making a full confession to killing Charlotte. He talked Kat out of admitting her part in the cover-up and was remanded in custody, refusing to see anyone. However, shortly before his sentencing he was visited in turn by Matt, Evelyn and Andy, with the latter promising to help him out. Despite the charge being downgraded to manslaughter, the fact he had kept quiet for so long and shown no remorse meant he was sentenced to twenty-five years, with no parole for twenty. As he was led away, he overpowered his guard, who had been bribed by Andy, and ran to Andy’s car where they drove off together. In the bush, they changed clothes and car and abandoned their phones after Josh had sent Evelyn a last message saying he was sorry and would love her forever. As they drove off together, Josh assured Andy he had no regrets.
Around four months after their escape, it was revealed that Andy and Josh had hid at an abandoned farm, sleeping in the farmhouse and sheltering in a makeshift shack in the ground where Josh had done a sketch of Evelyn. They moved on before the police arrived, but were later mentioned as having been arrested at the state border. He refused to let Evelyn visit him and Zac learned he had a new girlfriend.