Ajay Chopra jailed for sexually assaulting women on Vline


June 23, 2014 – 4:03PM

Ajay Chopra. Photo- James Aldersey

Ajay Chopra. Photo- James Aldersey

A man who told one of five women he sexually assaulted on a regional train service to ‘‘have a nice life’’ must spend at least 10 months in jail.

County Court judge Gerard Mullaly, in imposing a head sentence of 21 months on Ajay Chopra, said stern punishment awaited men who put their own “perverse sexual pleasure” above the rights of women.

“The sexual assault of fellow female passengers on public transport is shameful and dishonourable,” judge Mullaly said on Monday.

“Decent men do not do this.”

Chopra, 41, separately assaulted the women, aged between 18 and 30, while on the V/Line service between Melbourne and Bendigo between June and August 2011.

Chopra, of Bendigo, either assaulted the women, or tried to, when he took their hands claiming to be a palm reader and either put a woman’s hand on his crotch, or put his hand on or near their crotch, or both.

Prosecutor Neill Hutton said one of the victims felt Chopra’s erect penis under her hand and that the offender also put his hand up the woman’s dress.

“This continued until the offender got off the train at Bendigo. He turned (to the victim) and said ‘Have a nice have a nice life’, as he did so,” Mr Hutton said.

Chopra, who was travelling to and from Melbourne to work at a Telstra store, pleaded guilty to three counts of indecent assault and two charges of attempted indecent assault.

The court heard Chopra’s offending escalated in seriousness and that he had initially denied the charges, but changed his plea to guilty to “save face” with his family.

Defence counsel Mark Hird said a psychological assessment found Chopra “doesn’t want to face up to (the offending) rather than enter a genuine plea of guilty”.

Judge Mullaly said Chopra’s “shameful and concerning behaviour” had had a profound and lasting impact on his victims, significantly because of the delay in between the offending and sentencing.

The court was told one victim had suffered a severe blow to her self-confidence and was anxious, distrustful and felt constantly disappointed with herself.

Another, the judge said, had fought “a losing battle” against depression in the years since she was assaulted and felt she had lost two-and-a-half years of her life.

Judge Mullaly said the delay between offending and sentencing had “compounded” the problems of victims and that the public was entitled to an explanation.

He said the Bendigo court complex had only one court room equipped for trials by jury, and as a result, Chopra’s case was delayed until he pleaded guilty because of a backlog of cases.

Judge Mullaly said cities of a similar size to Bendigo had addressed shortages of adequate court rooms to hear jury trials.

“Bendigo stands apart and its citizens must wait too long to have cases heard,” he said.

Judge Mullaly said Chopra’s crimes also had a “corrosive” effect on the community because they added “to the unfortunate sense of fear that women have, that public transport is not safe”.

Chopra, who was supported in court by his wife, will have his name put on the sex offenders registry for life.

 

Man posing as palm reader jailed for sexually assaulting women on V/Line trains

Updated 44 minutes ago

A Bendigo man has been jailed for 21 months for sexually assaulting young women on V-Line trains while posing as a palm reader.

Ajay Chopra, 41, pleaded guilty to five charges over a series of sex assaults on trains between Bendigo and Melbourne in 2011.

The court heard Chopra would pretend to be a palm reader before grabbing the women’s hands and assaulting them.

His youngest victim was 18 years old.

“All of this was a ruse, and what you were attempting to do was either to put their hand in your crotch area or put your hand in their crotch area,” Judge Gerard Mullaly said.

Prosecutor Neil Hutton said that once Chopra had hold of a woman’s hands he would resist any efforts by them to pull away.

In one case, he held his hand under a woman’s dress; in another, he held his victim’s hand against himself.

“She could feel the man’s erect penis on the back of her hand,” Mr Hutton said.

“This activity happened for most of the trip to Bendigo, where he got off the train.

“He turned and said, ‘have a nice life’, as he did so.”

Victims left fearful of using public transport

The court was also told his victims were traumatised by the assaults and felt fearful travelling on public transport, particularly with men.

“Your offending was repetitive, escalating and persistent,” Judge Mullaly said.

“The sexual assault of fellow female passengers is shameful, dishonourable conduct. Decent men do not act like this.”

The sexual assault of fellow female passengers is shameful, dishonourable conduct. Decent men do not act like this.

Judge Gerard Mullaly

The court heard Chopra moved from India with his wife to Bendigo in 2011 and had shown no insight into, nor remorse for, his crimes, instead focusing on saving face.

Judge Mullaly said he had chosen vulnerable young victims and the nature of his offending had wider ramifications for the community.

“The fact they were conducted on public transport adds to the unfortunate sense of fear that women have that public transport is not safe.

“This fear is corrosive and impacts on women’s rights to go about their lives freely.”

Chopra was placed on the sex offenders register for life and will be eligible for parole in 10 months.

Poor court facilities prolonged suffering of victims: judge

Judge Mullaly also said the delay in the matter being resolved in the courts had prolonged the suffering for Chopra’s victims.

He added that Bendigo residents were being denied proper justice because of a lack of court facilities.

He said the public deserved to know why crimes committed in 2011 had taken so long to pass through the courts.

The case began in Bendigo but had to be moved to Melbourne because there was no suitable courtroom.

“Court facilities in Bendigo are and have been for too long inadequate to uphold the criminal justice system,” Judge Mullaly said.

Judge Mullaly said its court facilities compared badly with other regional cities in Victoria of the same size.

“It stands apart.

“It’s citizens must wait too long to have their cases heard…we must urgently investigate all possibilities to open up another courtroom in Bendigo.

“This case must prompt a re-doubling of efforts.”

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Adrian Bayley Pleads Guilty to Rape – Not Guilty to Murdering Jill Meagher


Jill Meagher

Adrian Bayley admitted raping and strangling Jill Meagher in a Melbourne laneway, but has pleaded not guilty to her murder.  The 41 year old will stand trial in the Victorian Supreme Court after the Deputy Chief Magistrate found there was enough evidence for a jury to convict him.  Bayley pleaded guilty to one count of rape in the Melbourne Magistrates Court yesterday and not guilty to murder and another two charges of rape.

UPDATE 5TH MAY 2013

Adrian Bayley arriving at court 5th May 2013

Adrian Bayley arriving at court 5th May 2013

ADRIAN Bayley has arrived at the Supreme Court for a hearing over the death of Melbourne woman Jill Meagher, where he is expected to plead guilty to charges of murder. More to come…

Bayley, 41, pleaded guilty in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on March 12 to one count of raping Ms Meagher.

He pleaded not guilty to her murder and two of three counts of rape.

Bayley was set to stand trial over the murder in a Brunswick laneway in September – a year after the crime that shocked the nation.

Last moments of Jill Meagher’s life

  • by: Paul Anderson – From: Herald Sun
  • March 13, 2013 8:59AM

THE man accused of murdering Jill Meagher ran out of petrol after burying the Irish-born ABC employee in a shallow grave, according to court documents.

A police summary of the case against Adrian Bayley, tendered in court, was released to the media after Bayley’s committal hearing yesterday.According to the summary, on the night of September 21 last year, while Ms Meagher was out celebrating with friends in Brunswick, Bayley was arguing with his girlfriend at Swanston St’s Lounge Bar.

The pipeline layer, 41, was arguing with her about “jealousy and possessiveness”. His girlfriend left and returned to their home in Coburg.

“The accused (Bayley) attempted to contact his girlfriend by phone; however, she refused to answer or return text messages and phone calls,” the summary stated.

Bayley left the Lounge Bar at 12.25am and caught a taxi home. There, he changed into a blue hoodie jumper, the summary said.It was about 1am when Ms Meagher, 29, left the Brunswick Green Hotel with a friend and walked to the Etiquette Bar.

Her friend left soon after, twice offering Ms Meagher a ride in a taxi. But she declined, deciding to walk the short distance home.

On her way, outside Chemist Warehouse, she asked a group of three people for a cigarette and had a “short friendly conversation” with the trio.

She then continued on her way along Sydney Rd, towards Hope St. Bayley was in the area by that stage, and saw Ms Meagher walking alone.

“(Bayley) has run up from behind Ms Meagher before slowing to a walk as he approached her.” The Police summary said

Bayley would later tell police: “I was just walking ahead of her and we’d already interacted on Sydney Rd and that’s when she rang her brother. She was actually telling me about her father.”

Ms Meagher called her brother, Michael McKeon, at 1.35am to talk about their sick father.
Mr McKeon said he would call her back in a minute or two. He would try, but his sister’s phone would ring out several times.

Ms Meagher’s husband, Tom, knew his wife was out for drinks with workmates.

At 1.37am, he sent her a text message from their home: “Are you okay?”

The Chief Crown prosecutor, Gavin Silbert, SC, told the court it was 1.38am when Bayley “accosted” Ms Meagher and “proceeded to drag her into a laneway on Hope St between Oven St and Sydney Rd, where he has raped and strangled her”.A bin and parked car in a laneway off Hope St, Brunswick, where Jill Meagher's handbag was found

Bayley later told detectives: “I actually apologised. I can’t imagine how she felt but I know how I felt. All I thought was, ‘What have I done?’ “

Mr Silbert told the court: “(Bayley) has left the body of the deceased in the laneway and returned to his home address, where he has collected a shovel and his white Holden Astra.”

At 1.47am, an extremely worried Tom Meagher sent his wife another text.

“Answer me, I’m really worried,” it read.

He sent another at 2.07am: “Please pick up.”

The court heard Bayley returned to the laneway at 4.22am and put Ms Meagher’s body into the boot of the car.

He drove to Blackhill Rd, Gisborne South, where he buried Ms Meagher by the side of the road.

“I cried, man, and I dug a hole . . . I didn’t cry for me,” Bayley told detectives.

Tom Meagher, meanwhile, had searched the Brunswick streets in vain.

Adrian Bayley as he was taken into custody in the back of a police car. Picture: Stephen Harman

“I kept trying to ring her but there was no answer,” he said in his police statement.

Bayley was driving home from Gisborne when his car ran out of petrol near the Calder Highway.

He managed to wave down motorist Dayle Watkins, who drove him to a nearby service station.

There, about 6am, he filled a jerry can with petrol.

Mr Watkins then drove Bayley back to his vehicle.

On September 27, after investigating the crime scene and gathering evidence, including CCTV footage and phone records, homicide detectives arrested Bayley.

“After investigators informed (Bayley) of the evidence implicating him, he made admissions,” the police summary stated.

“(Bayley) stated that it was due to the argument that he had had earlier in the night with his girlfriend, that (Bayley) had an angry and aggressive demeanour which he transferred onto the deceased.”

Yesterday, Bayley pleaded not guilty to one count of murder and two counts of rape.

He pleaded guilty to one charge of rape.

EDITED RECORD OF INTERVIEW WITH ADRIAN ERNEST BAYLEY TENDERED TO COURT 

Adrian Ernest Bayley

BAYLEY: You know what? I hope I never get out, because you know why I hope that, because then no one else ever has to be hurt because someone hurts me. I don’t deal with – with hurt very well. You know it wasn’t really my intention to hurt her, you know that? When we conversed, I swear to you man – I swear to I’d – I’d just – I spoke to her and she looked – she looked distraught. Does that make sense?

DETECTIVE:Yeah it does.

BAYLEY:She didn’t look happy.

DETECTIVE:Yeah it does.

BAYLEY:And I spoke to – I spoke to hear, you now and said, look, I’ll just – I’ll – I’ll help you, you know. That’s what I said to her and she was like fu… anyway it doesn’t matter. She flipped me off and that made me angry, because I was trying to do a nice thing. You know that?

DETECTIVE: Yeah yeah.

BAYLEY: She looked distraught.

BAYLEY:She looked distraught, you know. She looked like she was lost … always try to do the right thing some – you know, most of the time and I didn’t take well to her response, you know. I just don’t wanna go through it in detail. That – I can’t.

DETECTIVE: What happened to Jill?

BAYLEY:They should have the death penalty for people like me.

DETECTIVE:I can’t tell you what’s gonna happen.

BAYLEY:No well – that’s what I hope.

DETECTIVE:So you said she fobbed you off and you got angry. Tell me what happened then?

BAYLEY:Oh I just got pissed off and I actually walked off and she followed. I actually walked in front of her and she followed.

DETECTIVE:Yep.

BAYLEY:And it just got worse.

DETECTIVE:Tell me what happened.

BAYLEY:(Starts to cry) … like a big sissy man.

BAYLEY:I wanna do the right thing. It’s not fair on any of this to – it’s not fair of any of this stuff to have happened, let alone her family and stuff too.

DETECTIVE: Yeah.

BAYLEY:Not knowing.

DETECTIVE:Would you be willing to come with me and show me?

BAYLEY:I’ll try. I’ll do my best man.

DETECTIVE:I appreciate that.

BAYLEY:I’m not sure how to get there.

BAYLEY:I know what I’m saying to you. It’s not fair for this to have happened, and it’s not fair on her family and its not fair on them not knowing. It’s not fair.

DETECTIVE:Um. I understand why you don’t want to go into the detail. I understand that totally. Um how – how did she die?

BAYLEY: (Starts to cry). I strangled her.

DETECTIVE:Sorry?

BAYLEY: (Continues to cry). What have I done? What have I done man?

DETECTIVE:And where did that happen?

BAYLEY:On Hope Street.

DETECTIVE:How did she come to get in the laneway?

BAYLEY:we – we walked past it.

DETECTIVE:yeah

BAYLEY:That far down Hope St. I didn’t take her from the street, or – you know?

DETECTIVE: Yeah and then?

BAYLEY:And we were just talking you know? We weren’t – there was no argument, there was no – it was just talking. And then um …

DETECTIVE:Alright.

BAYLEY:I was just walking ahead of her and we’d already interacted on Sydney Rd, and that’s when she rang her brother. She was actually telling me about her father.

DETECTIVE:Right

BAYLEY:You know? And I was just – I was trying to be nice and – she kept going from being nice to nasty, to nice, to – you know what I mean?

DETECTIVE:Yep.

BAYLEY:And it just sort of ended up in the alley. I cant remember yeah, you know what I mean, 100 per cent, like how it ended up. We were just sort of – we were standing there.

DETECTIVE: Um how did you – how did you strangle her?

BAYLEY:With my hands.

DETECTIVE:With your hands. And once that had happened, what did you do?

(interview interrupted by knock at door, then resumes)

BAYLEY:I didn’t run.

DETECTIVE:You didn’t run?

BAYLEY:(starts to cry) That’s not it man. I actually apologised.

DETECTIVE:To her?

BAYLEY:But I didn’t run. I didn’t – didn’t know what to do. It’s a horrible feeling man.

DETECTIVE: Yeah.

BAYLEY:I can’t imagine how – how she felt, but I know how I felt. It’s not nice man, its not nice. And all I thought was what have I done? That’s all I thought. That was the thought in my head, what have I done after I said sorry. I didn’t know what else to say, man. I don’t know what else to say.

DETECTIVE:And what happened to her belongings?

BAYLEY:The phone I smashed. Just the other stuff I threw.

DETECTIVE:You walk to the side, you get the shovel. Tell me what you do.

BAYLEY:I cried man, and I dug a hole.

DETECTIVE:Yeah

BAYLEY: I cried man, And I didn’t cry for me, you need to understand that. I didn’t cry for me, just like I’m not crying for me now.

Jill Meagher

TIMELINE

Saturday September 22, 2012

  • 1.30am: Jill Meagher leaves Bar Etiquette in Sydney Rd, Brunswick, in Melbourne’s inner-north to walk home. CCTV from the Dutchess Boutique captures both Ms Meagher and Adrian Bayley walking past.
  • 1.38am: Mr Bayley allegedly grabs Ms Meagher and drags her into a nearby laneway off Hope St.
  • 1.40am – 1.45am: Neighbours hear a woman yelling from laneway. After a few minutes the yelling stops.
  • 2am: Tom Meagher tries calling his wife’s mobile phone.
  • 4am: Mr Meagher leaves his home in Lux Way – not far from the scene – to go and look for his wife.
  • 4.22am: It is alleged that having gone home to Coburg in Melbourne’s northern suburbs for a shovel, Mr Bayley returns in his white Holden Astra.
  • 4.26am: Car allegedly drives off with Ms Meagher’s body in the boot.
  • 6am: After continuing to call his wife’s phone all night without luck, Mr Meagher reports her missing.

Sunday September 23

  • 12.30pm: A Facebook page is set up in the hope somebody saw Ms Meagher.
  • 3.15pm: Police release public call for information about Ms Meagher’s disappearance.

Monday September 24

  • 6.30am: Ms Meagher’s handbag found in lane off Hope St. Police believe it was planted the day before.
  • 8.50am: Homicide squad takes over the case.
  • 1.45pm: Forensic officers recover evidence from the lane way. Detectives interview Mr Meagher.

Tuesday September 25

  • 12.30pm: Forensic police search the Meagher home and take away their car and bags of items for testing.
  • 3.55pm: Police release footage from the Dutchess Boutique of Ms Meagher and a man in a blue hoodie.
  • 6.15pm: Police return to the Meagher home and search again.

Thursday September 27

  • 2.30pm: Mr Bayley arrested in Coburg.
  • 3.58pm: Police interview with Mr Bayley begins.
  • 10pm: Interview suspended while police travel to a site allegedly nominated by Mr Bayley.

Friday September 28

  • 3am: Mr Bayley remanded at an out-of-sessions hearing after being charged with murder.
  • 4am: Ms Meagher’s body is taken away by coronial staff after being recovered from a shallow grave at the side of Black Hill Rd in Gisborne South, north of Melbourne.

Adrian Bayley ALLEGEDLY Raped and Murdered Jill Meagher


The original thread to this sad case can be found here

I just watched footage of saddened ladies laying down bunches of flowers and something struck me out of the blue.

For a bunch of flowers ladies go out and buy one of those personal alarms. No need to wear it inside, or at home or with friends, but for those walks to a car, a taxi, a bus, or short walk home it could save your life.

Once activated they emit an ear piercing siren that cannot be turned off. It would bring attention instantly to your predicament and most likely scare off any would be attacker/abductor.

If you only ever use it once it may save your life girls, think about it.

Here is an example, for 9 dollars I I just googled personal alarm for this example

Product Description
Descriptions:
Protect yourself against intruders/attackers
This Personal Alarm suitable for joggers, elderly, disabled, night shift workers and some people who live alone
120dB high volume alarm will scare away the attackers and remind the others as SOS
Just pull off the hand strap to activate alarm, insert the hand strap to the plug to stop the alarm
The LED Spotlight is useful in the dark place
Key chain design allows you can take it with you to anywhere
Powered by 4 LR44 button cells(pre-loaded)
Dimensions: 73x45x15mm
Weight : 50g
Notice:
The alarm sound is very loud, never put the unit close to your ears

A fantastic article by veteran crime journo John Silvester, gives us a real insight behind the scenes as to how they caught the “Alleged” rapist and murderer, including the early speculation about why Jill’s husband was checked out as a suspect in a case like this.

Police suspected Jill Meagher’s killer might strike again and acted quickly, writes John Silvester.

At first it was just a missing person’s case. A person who had a little too much to drink had not made it home – an event that happens every night across Australia

By Saturday afternoon Homicide Crew Four, the suspicious missing persons unit under Detective Sergeant Dave Butler, began to monitor the situation. Soon it became obvious this was not a matter of a night spent on someone’s couch.

Jill Meagher’s phone had gone dead and she had not attempted to access her bank accounts, which discounted thoughts she had engineered her own disappearance.

Public grief over Jill Meagher

So by late Sunday, more than 36 hours after she was last seen drinking with her ABC work colleagues in Brunswick, an inner-city Melbourne suburb, Crew Four moved in.

But, at least initially, this was not a normal murder probe, as police were not sure there had been a murder at all.

While the investigation had to remain measured, there was an unspoken urgency. What if Jill had been abducted and was still alive?

When homicide detectives arrived in Brunswick on Monday morning detectives did not even have a crime scene.

What they did have was a starting point. They knew she had left Bar Etiquette to walk to her home in Lux Way. They knew she had refused an offer from a colleague to accompany her for safety.

Eventually her handbag was recovered in Hope Street but police were convinced it was not there when they checked the area on Saturday afternoon. This meant it had been planted some time later.

This would have initially indicated the offender might have lived nearby. (The reality was a local found the handbag in the lane on Saturday morning then returned on Sunday evening to put it back as a result of the media publicity.)

The first step for police was to confirm she had not made her destination, which meant interviewing her husband, Tom.

He was told firmly, but politely, that the homicide squad begins with those closest to the victim and then work its way out in ever increasing circles.

The reality is that in the majority of murders the victim knows the offender, and in most cases involving females they are killed by their partners.

Meagher had fallen asleep in front of the television late on Friday night and missed a text from his wife saying, ”Meet me at the pub.”

Police were able to corroborate much of his story, which effectively removed him from the suspect list by Tuesday. He was as he appeared. An undeniably decent man subjected to grief beyond imagination

Detectives began to trawl through her personal life to determine whether she had a boyfriend, was under work pressure, or suffered depression or a medical condition that could explain her disappearance.

When these were discounted the strongest theory became the most ominous. That she had been abducted off the street. That someone seeing a pretty, isolated and vulnerable woman simply bundled her off into the night.

And in the void came the theories. The husband had not reacted as he should. Why had she made the last call to her family in Perth and not to Tom? Why had he said she had not gone out with her handbag when she had?

This reflected not so much on Meagher as our need to come up with acceptable alternatives to the awful possibility she was the victim of an opportunistic abduction.

On Wednesday morning the homicide detectives had to make some tough decisions. They had sourced some CCTV footage from a Sydney Road boutique, which showed Jill outside the shop at 1.43am – her last known sighting just 450 metres from home. It also showed a man in a blue hoodie talking to her.

From the moment the detectives saw these images he became their number one suspect.

There was some debate over whether to make to the footage public. Police knew that he would surely be identified once it was released, but if Jill was still alive the consequences would be disastrous.

The truth was police had concluded she was dead. There was further debate over whether releasing the vision could lead the blue hoodie man to destroy evidence, fabricate an alibi, flee or self harm.

Perhaps in a regular homicide investigation police would have waited another 48 hours before releasing the film. But this was anything but normal and they decided to call for a public appeal to find this man. They feared they were hunting a predator who could strike again.

The response from the public was overwhelming, with 550 calls made to Crime Stoppers. Disturbingly many of the calls reported similar abduction attempts in the area that were not initially been reported to police. This is now the subject of a separate police investigation.

The suspect was ultimately identified internally by the homicide squad and by late Wednesday they had a name: Adrian Ernest Bayley, 41, of Coburg.

The surveillance squad, known as ”The Dogs”, was called in to watch him for two reasons – to check if he acted suspiciously and to ensure he could not strike again.

By Thursday morning he was confirmed as the man in the blue hoodie.

Surveillance police observed him behave as if an average guy from the suburbs, heading to work and following his normal routine. But his past showed another side. He was, as they say, ”known to police”. He had a history that fitted the likely profile and the CCTV vision showed him talking to the victim just before she disappeared.

As he was followed on Thursday morning by The Dogs, Crew Four started to rehearse the interview they would conduct with him later that day. They spoke to police who had previously dealt with him and carefully prepared a strategy designed for his personality.

The interview room was arranged to be non-threatening. Gone was the desk, the notebooks and the straight questions of a formal record of interview.

This was to be a friendly conversation rather than the third degree.

On Thursday afternoon Bayley was apprehended and taken to the St Kilda Road homicide office.

At first he was friendly but insistent. He was not in Sydney Road early Saturday morning, had not spoken to the victim and was not the man on the CCTV footage.

After some hours police played their ace. They showed him evidence that he was the man.

Police will allege that he eventually told them the story, admitting he grabbed Jill Meagher and took her to a side street where he sexually assaulted her.

They will produce the videoed confession in which he says he drove to Gisborne, a town 55 kilometres north-west of Melbourne, and used his own shovel to dig a shallow grave to hide his victim.

After initially denying any involvement he finally took police to the site where the body was recovered.

Yesterday he appeared in the Melbourne Magistrates Court charged with rape and murder.

It took six days to catch him. It took six minutes to remand him.

UPDATE 1pm 28/09/12: THE man charged over the disappearance of ABC employee Jill Meagher sat with head bowed in court this afternoon, charged with rape and murder.

Adrian Ernest Bayley, 41, of Coburg, sat in the dock of courtroom one at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court only metres from Ms Meagher’s husband Tom and her brother Michael – both men sitting in the first row in the courtroom flanked by homicide squad detectives.

Nine hours earlier, detectives had uncovered Ms Meagher’s body in a shallow grave beside a dirt track in Gisborne South.

Mr Bayley had appeared at an out of sessions court hearing about 2.30am, charged with rape and murder in Brunswick on September 22.

In court today, Tom and Michael did not look across at Mr Bayley throughout the short hearing.

Before the filing hearing started, Deputy Chief Magistrate Jelena Popovic greeted Ms Meagher’s relatives and told them the matter would take only a couple of minutes.

Mr Bayley sat in jeans and a blue T-shirt, a tattoo prominent on his muscled arm.

His face appeared flushed.

His legal aid defence lawyer told Ms Popovic there were no custody management issues.

In a meek-sounding voice, Mr Bayley replied “Yes” when Ms Popovic asked him if he understood that she could not entertain a bail application due to the murder charge.

Tom Meagher shot a gaze at Mr Bayley as guards led him from the court, and then whispered something to Ms Meagher’s brother.

Mr Bayley will re-appear in court on January 18 next year.

This thread is for discussion for after the arrest and beyond. This bloke is one dirty dog with plenty of form, including sexual violence! See below

IN the early hours of this morning, homicide detectives were led to a dark field on the edge of Melbourne, to the body of Jill Meagher.

Police will allege Bayley raped and murdered Ms Meagher on the morning of September 22 in Brunswick.

Shortly afterwards, 41-year-old Adrian Bayley was charged with the rape and murder of the popular ABC Radio manager, who disappeared six days ago after spending an evening out with friends and work colleagues.

Mr Bayley did not enter a plea in the brief out of sessions court hearing, speaking only to say he understood the charges. He was wearing a navy blue shirt and jeans.

He is alleged to be the man in the blue hoodie police had been searching for since the broadcast of CCTV footage taken from within a bridal shop on a busy road in the north Melbourne suburb of Brunswick which showed Ms Meagher being beckoned to by an unidentified man.

Of all the possibilities that confronted police when Ms Meagher first went missing early last Saturday morning, this was the least likely; a genuinely random, opportunistic attack.

Police believe Mr Bayley did not know Ms Meagher, a petite, vivacious 29-year-old Irish woman who had been living and working in Melbourne for several years.

Ms Meagher’s family, including her distraught husband Tom Meagher, were told of the tragic developments in the homicide and missing persons investigation yesterday afternoon.

When Mr Bayley was arrested in Coburg and brought to the homicide squad’s St Kilda Road police headquarters, he at first refused to answer questions. Eventually, after several hours in custody, he helped police locate her body.

Ms Meagher’s death will shock her family: her parents George and Edith McKeon, who live in Perth; her brother Michael, who arrived from Ireland in the days of uncertainty since she was last in the company of friends in Bar Etiquette, a regular haunt in her Brunswick neighbourhood.

The apartment she shared with her husband was just a five minute walk around the corner from the bar. Despite the offer from a friend to walk her home, she insisted on making the short trip alone.

The news will also devastate the tight-knit ABC Radio community at the broadcaster’s Southbank studios, where Ms Meagher had worked since January.

In a job where broadcasters and producers and journalists and technicians work around the clock in shifts, Ms Meagher was a constant presence throughout the day.

She did the rosters, made the travel arrangements, solved problems. If anyone needed something done, they went to Ms Meagher. At other times she sat at her desk on the other side of a glass partition from one of the broadcasting booths, sharing in off-air jokes.

In the days after she went missing, broadcasters and others struggled to do their jobs. That was when they hoped she was still alive.

The emergence of CCTV footage showing Ms Meagher walking along Sydney Road in Brunswick at about 1:40am last Saturday appears to have been crucial to solving the case. Prior to then, investigating police were uncertain whether Ms Meagher had attempted the walk home, or whether she had left the bar in other circumstances.

The discovery of her handbag in a nearby laneway a day after police had combed the area perplexed detectives, who believed they would not have missed such an obvious clue. They suspected it may have been planted, but did not know by who.

The field where Ms Meagher was found lay off a dirt track near Gisborne South, a country town fast being absorbed by Melbourne’s suburban spread north west of the city. As daylight broke this morning, police were continuing to scour the crime scene.

Mr Bayley was remanded in custody to appear before the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court this morning.

HERE is everything we know about the disappearance of Jill Meagher:

Saturday 1.39am – A man in a blue hoodie is seen walking in front of Sydney Rd shop Duchess Boutique between 1:39 and 1:43am

1.43am – After leaving Bar Etiquette around 1.30am, the 29 year-old is last seen on CCTV speaking with a man wearing a blue hoodie. The footage captures her looking unsteady on her feet and checking her phone. Minutes later, Ms Meagher’s brother Michael McKeon calls his sister several times, with no response.

2am – Ms Meagher’s husband Tom Meagher tries calling his wife’s mobile phone “non-stop” between 2am to 6am after she fails to return home.

4am – Mr Meagher heads out from their home on Lux Way to search for his wife. He contacts police after failing to locate her.

Saturday morning – Police commence the search to find the ABC worker.

Sunday – Police continue to search for the Brunswick woman. Posters are placed on Sydney Rd appealing for information.

12.30pm – A Facebook page is set up, urging the public to come forward with clues.

3.15pm – Police release a statement appealing for anyone who knows of Ms Meagher’s whereabouts to contact Crime Stoppers.

Monday 6.30am – Police find Ms Meagher’s handbag in a lane off Hope St, Brunswick. Police say they had previously searched the area and suspect the bag may have been “planted” after Sunday afternoon. There are no obvious signs of a struggle and her bag still contains her credit card. Ms Meagher’s phone remains missing.

8.50am –Homicide squad takes over the case.

1.45pm – Forensic experts emerge from the alley way with two brown paper bags.

Monday 1pm – Mr Meagher is questioned by police as routine.

Monday afternoon – A Sydney Rd shopkeeper’s security camera captures one man – possibly two – walking behind Ms Meagher. The shopkeeper also notices a car at the scene. The footage prompts police to seek other store footage. Police confirm Ms Meagher’s phone and bank card had not been used since Saturday.

Tuesday 12.30pm – Police search Meagher’s home and take away the Meaghers’ car for analysis. They spend a total of five hours searching the apartment and leave with six bags filled with personal items. The apartment is so full with forensic specialists, Mr Meagher and his brother-in-law Michael sit outside on the balcony for more than two hours.

3.55pm – Police release a statement and footage of the 29-year-old Irish national walking north along Sydney Rd. Police release several minutes of footage in which a man in a blue hoodie can be seen walking in front of Duchess Boutique.

6.15pm – Police return to the Meaghers’ apartment for a further search. They go back to the squad car to collect more evidence bags.

8.20pm – Police leave the Meaghers’ apartment with more paper bags.

Wednesday 11.43am – Police release another statement urging other people in the CCTV footage to come forward to give details of what they may have seen on the night of Ms Meagher’s disappearance. Prompted by the footage, women emerge with their own stories of attacks on Sydney Rd. The Find Jill Meagher Facebook page attracts more than 67, 000 likes and an outpouring of tributes. A witness claims to have seen the man wearing a hoodie running after Ms Meagher on Sydney Rd.

Thursday morning – Six days since Ms Meagher was last seen. One of six people seen on the CCTV footage released comes forward. Daniel Gregson says he did not see the man in the hoodie or Ms Meagher on the night she disappeared.

2.30pm – Police arrest a man at his Coburg home in relation to the disappearance of Ms Meagher. He is taken to St Kida Rd police complex to be interviewed.

3:15pm – Social media platforms are ablaze with news of the development, and tweets mentioning Ms Meagher’s name hit almost 12 million Twitter news feeds. Hundreds flood to the Help Find Jill Meagher Facebook page to post their thoughts.

10pm – Police whisk away the man, Adrian Ernest Bayley, from St Kilda Rd police complex. He leads them to Ms Meagher’s body.

1:45am – Police charge the 41 year-old man with the alleged rape and murder of Ms Meagher after discovering her body. They allege he is the man seen on CCTV footage wearing a blue hoodie and talking to Ms Meagher in the early hours of Saturday morning on Sydney Rd.

Friday 3am – Bayley is remanded in an out-of-sessions court hearing that lasts only 90 seconds at St Kilda Rd police station. The bail justice tells the accused he should not receive bail given the seriousness of the charges.

4am – After discovering Ms Meagher’s body in a shallow grave on Black Hill Rd at Gisborne South, Coroner’s Office staff put the body into a white van. Police complete a five-hour investigation at the scene.

11am – Ms Meagher’s husband and brother arrive at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court for the filing hearing of the accused.

Thug, 40, jailed for drunken king-hit

Karen Matthews   |  February 28th, 2012

A 40-YEAR-OLD thug, still on parole, claimed he was too drunk to remember king-hitting a Geelong man, breaking his jaw and rendering him unconcious, a court has heard.

Adrian Bayley, of Burgundy Dve, Wyndhamvale, pleaded guilty in Geelong Magistrates’ Court yesterday to a single charge of recklessly causing serious injury.

Police Prosecutor Leading Senior Constable David Vanderpol said that, about 1.24am on August 12, last year, the 20-year-old victim was standing outside a cafe in Little Malop St having something to eat when Bayley approached.

“Bayley started yelling and abusing the victim, then punched him with a closed fist to the face,” Sen-Constable Vanderpol said.

“The power of the blow lifted the victim off the ground and knocked him unconcious to the ground, striking his head as he fell.”

The prosecutor said Bayley then ran off and the victim was taken to Geelong Hospital with a fractured jaw.

Sen-Constable Vanderpol said the entire incident was captured on CCTV footage and there was also footage which showed Bayley earlier at the Eureka Hotel.

He said police later arrested Bayley who claimed he was too drunk to remember but recalled being involved in some sort of altercation.

Michael Brugman, for Bayley, said his client was distraught that he had harmed someone else.

“He has been losing sleep wondering how or why and trying to remember,” Mr Brugman said.

The lawyer said his client had spent most of his life in jail and was currently on parole until March 17, 2013.

“He stopped drinking on Boxing Day, is due to start a new job today and has no priors for violence,” Mr Brugman said.

But Magistrate Ron Saines rejected Mr Brugman’s claim that his client had no priors for violence.

“I have no alternative but to order an immediate custodial sentence,” Mr Saines told Bayley.

“Your past history involves sexual violence and you have been jailed for other serious matters.”

Bayley was convicted and sentenced to three months jail.

He was also excluded from entering Geelong’s CBD for 12 months.

What happened to Jill Meagher? Well allegedly Raped and Murdered by Adrian Bayley


This bloke is one dirty dog with plenty of form, including sexual violence! I have started a new thread based on his arrest, charges and beyond today for discussion moving forward… here is the link

Update – alleged rapist and killer leads police to shallow grave this morning

September 28, 2012 6:31AM

Jill Meagher’s body found, Adrian Ernest Bayley, charged

Adrian Ernest Bayley has been charged with the rape and murder of Jill Meagher, her body was found 50km away from Melbourne. This is allegedly an image of the despicable mongrel dog

The alleged-Adrian Ernest Bayley

With this disgusting crime there are more than one victim, my personal apologies and thoughts go to Tom Meagher, the husband of Jill, who had to endure the scrutiny and suspicion of being a suspect in her disappearance from early on in the investigation.

It is the first place they go looking when a partner disappears, the police the media the social media. Random Opportunistic crimes of this nature in Australia very rarely happen like this in the city, if anywhere.

How wrong a lot of us were this time. Robbo

THE Coroner has removed the body of Jill Meagher from a shallow grave near a remote road about 50km northwest of Melbourne.

Police made the discovery early this morning on Black Hill Road at Gisborne South, about 15 minutes drive from the Calder Freeway.

Coroners remove the body of Jill Meagher from a shallow grave near Black Hill Road, 50km northwest of Melbourne.

The body was in a shallow grave near a tree about five metres from Black Hill Road.

The Coroners Office put the body into a white van just before 4am after detectives finished their five-hour investigation of the scene.

An autopsy will be conducted today.

Police say they were led to the scene by the man charged with the murder and rape of Ms Meagher.

Adrian Ernest Bayley, 41, was remanded at an out-of-sessions court hearing shortly before 3am that lasted only 90 seconds at St Kilda Road Police Station.

The bail justice told Bayley he should not be given bail given the seriousness of the charges against him.

She asked him whether he understood the charges, to which he replied a simple “yes”.

Asked whether he wanted the charges read to him, the accused said “no”.

The accused wore a blue T-shirt, jeans and red-and-black Nike runners and showed no emotion as he sat with his chin in his hand.

Police will allege Bayley raped and murdered Ms Meagher on the morning of September 22 in Brunswick.

He will appear at Melbourne Magistrates’ Court later today.

This morning’s events came after police swooped on the suspect’s Coburg home at 2.30pm and took him to the St Kilda Rd Police Complex where he was interviewed.

Police will allege he is the man seen on CCTV wearing a blue hoodie top and talking to Ms Meagher on Sydney Rd early on Saturday Rd moments before she vanished.

UPDATE TONIGHT 7PM 27/09/12

31 yr correction 41 yr old man from Coburg has been arrested in relation to Jill’s disappearance- More to come

POLICE have arrested a man over the disappearance of missing woman Jill Meagher.

A 41-year-old Coburg man will be charged with her abduction and murder.

Police swooped on the man late today at his home and took him to the St Kilda Rd Police Complex where he was being interviewed. No charges have yet been laid.

The Herald Sun has been told police have no other suspects and it was allegedly an opportunistic crime.

His arrest by the homicide squad missing persons unit came a day after police released CCTV video of a man wearing a hoodie, who was seen talking to Ms Meagher, 29, at 1.43am on Saturday as she walked home.

Police have not said if the man who has been arrested is the person in the hoodie.

Ms Meagher’s brother, Michael McKeon, was overwhelmed when told of the arrest. Police fear Ms Meagher was abducted while making the short walk home from a Sydney Rd bar in Brunswick.

This sad situation is becoming more mysterious and sinister as each day passes

UPDATE MIDDAY 27/09/12

THE CCTV footage video makes for some interesting new possibilities, the end result is what is important no matter how police get to it. One person in the video has already come forard and provided a statement. Others are urged to do the same as reports of new CCTV has been made available.

Here is a interactive map of the Bridal Boutique from which the current CCTV footage came from (I hope it works)

Also someone sent me this video, which shows the path Jill may have taken with all the info available.

The walk from where Jill Meagher was seen on CCTV to her home

A video walk from the last confirmed sighting of missing Brunswick woman, Jill Meagher, down Sydney Road onto Hope Street, the lane where her handbag was found on Monday morning and to her home on Lux Way. Note: the purpose of the video is to show the distance and landmarks on this route only. It is no way implying that this is route Jill took in the early morning of September 22, 2012. For those of you in Brunswick and familiar with the area, this is not made for you. Rather, this video is made for those not familiar with the area- By Matt Mitchell

Update 11.55am 26/09/12

POLICE have confirmed that they will release “relevant” CCTV footage into the disappearance of Jill Meagher today. Says a lot, very selective in what they are releasing

Homicide Squad Det-Insp John Potter said the footage would be released after he provides an update on Ms Meagher’s disappearance at a press conference at 1pm. Will post video on completion folks

Update 10.30am 26/09/12

‘Mystery man captured on CCTV’ on morning Jill Meagher disappeared

THE image of a mystery man who could be following Jill Meagher is being analysed by police investigating the ABC employee’s disappearance, according to reports.

Missing woman Jill Meagher in a picture from her Facebook page

Police twice search Jill Meagher’s home

Hunt for Jill intensifies

Detectives at Jill’s home

A man was pictured in the same frame of CCTV footage with Ms Meagher on the morning she disappeared, and police will decide whether the image of that man will be released today, 3AW reported this morning.

Homicide detectives spent five hours in total inside the Melbourne home of the missing woman yesterday, leaving at 8.20pm with filled brown paper bags.

The search for clues continued after the last known moments of Ms Meagher were recovered, with crucial CCTV images showing the Irish national just minutes from home in the city’s inner north.

A time stamp on the footage places Ms Meagher, 29, walking north on Sydney Rd in Brunswick less than 100m before Hope St, where her bag was found just around the corner.
As the probe enters its fifth day, the homicide squad’s Detective Inspector John Potter said they did not have a suspect but it was odd there was no evidence of a struggle in Hope St, where her bag was found in a laneway.

update 4.20pm 25/09/12

UPDATE: MISSING person Jill Meagher has been captured on CCTV in the early hours of Saturday morning, police revealed this afternoon.

Homicide Squad detectives said the footage shows Jill walking north along Sydney Rd, Brunswick, just south of Hope Street, at 1.41am.

update 3.30pm 25/09/12

BREAKING Police have removed bags full of potential evidence from the apartment of Tom and Jill Meagher

Police have removed bags full of potential evidence from the apartment of Tom and Jill Meagher

September 25, 2012 11:58AM

Jill Meagher, 29, was last seen leaving Brunswick’s Bar Etiquette about 1.30am on Saturday

Jill Meagher, 29, was last seen leaving Brunswick’s Bar Etiquette about 1.30am on Saturday

UPDATE: POLICE are probing whether missing woman Jill Meagher’s handbag was planted as a decoy to distract the investigation.

Meagher outside the Brunswick Police station amid the search for his wife Jill.

Recommended Coverage

Police find items of missing woman

ABC radio employee missing in Melbourne

Search for missing woman Jill Meagher

Ms Meagher, 29, failed to arrive home following a five-minute walk from Bar Etiquette to her Lux Way apartment after leaving a friend in Sydney Rd, Brunswick, early Saturday.

Questions about the handbag have emerged as more than 60 calls were made to Crime Stoppers about the disappearance of the Irish-born woman, with other women reporting abduction attempts in the vicinity of where the ABC worker vanished from Melbourne’s inner-north.

Police today are examining the calls prompted by pleas for information about the case.

Homicide Squad Det-Insp John Potter, who is spearheading the investigation, told the Herald Sun it was odd that a police search of the area on the weekend which “left no stone unturned” had failed to locate the handbag, which police were alerted to early yesterday.

“On Sunday police conducted a full line search up and around Hope St,” he said.

“There’s two options – the original search found nothing and then on Monday the bag was found by a local resident.

Police find items of missing woman

Police say they’ve found items they believe to belong to an ABC radio employee who disappeared in Melbourne.

“You’ve got to ask which is true.”

He said the bag was found in a “clearly visible” spot on the ground in a laneway off Hope St.

“We’ve got to look at the possibility of the bag being placed there late on Sunday or early Monday morning,” he said.

He said the bag’s contents had been untouched, except for Ms Meagher’s mobile phone which was missing.

“Her cards and the other contents were still inside. She hasn’t accessed the bank or anything like that,” he said.

He said questions raised surrounding the discovery of the bag had prompted investigators to re-examine whether Ms Meagher had even left Sydney Rd in Brunswick the night she disappeared.

“One would now argue that we don’t know for sure if she actually walked up Hope St,” he said.

“We don’t know whether she made it that far.

“We hold grave concerns for Jill’s welfare – the fact the bag was discovered so close to home and the fact this disappearance is totally out of character for her.”

Insp Potter said it was now thought that Ms Meagher left Bar Etiquette after 1.30am, and it was unclear whether she left with by herself, with others, or got into a car.

No CCTV footage was available from Bar Etiquette, making it harder for police to piece together her night.

Det-Insp Potter urged any patrons of Bar Etiquette in Sydney Rd to contact Crime Stoppers immediately as they could “hold the key” to establishing a detailed timeline of Ms Meagher’s movements before she disappeared.

CCTV examined as cops probe more kidnap fears

Insp Potter said police would also continue to review CCTV footage from nearby businesses.

The spike in reported abductions and kidnappings comes as Ms Meagher’s family made desperate pleas for her return.

Ms Meagher’s mother, Edith McKeon said her daughter would have fought any attacker.

“Whoever (has her) just let her go, let her (go),” she said.

“Even though she’s tiny I think she would have fought.”

Insp Potter said police were investigating claims women have been followed by a car in the same area that Ms Meagher disappeared.

“Some of them (the claims) have not been reported to police and we need those people to contact us,” he said.

The calls come as messages of support continue to be posted on a Facebook page dedicated to finding the Irish national. Help us find Jill Meagher has more than 50,000 likes.

Brunswick nightlife attracts hipster crowd

The desperate search for Ms Meagher comes as Victoria Police figures show reported abduction and kidnap offences have skyrocketed in the region, up from 226 in the previous financial year to 291, a rise of 28.8 per cent.

There were 611 offences recorded in this category in 2011-2012, and 159 of those occurred on the street.

has also been posted on the Facebook page.

Official reports show:

ON June 24, a 34-year old woman reported that she was attacked on Albert St in the early hours.

ON May 6, a man attempted to abduct a woman as she walked along Mitchell St towards Sydney Rd.

The man covered the woman’s mouth and forced her to the ground but she was able to fight him off. Police believe he threw kerosene in the woman’s face before he fled.

IN July 2010, a 29-year-old woman walking her dog through Gilpin Park was struck on the head, dragged and thrown to the ground before a man attempted to sexually assault her at knifepoint.

 Charlie Bezzina examines the scene

IN January that year a 13-year-old girl was assaulted by a man behind a church on Saxon St after being lured from Sydney Rd.

Police fear the ABC staffer has met with foul play.

Insp Potter said Ms Meagher’s will be forensically examined.

ABC fear for colleague

“I think there is always concern for the community when something like this happens,” Insp Potter said.

“The biggest problem is we don’t know what has happened to Jill so I would say people should be cautious when walking along the street at night.”

Insp Potter said somebody must know what happened to Ms Meagher.

“It’s not too late to tell us or indeed if Jill can hear this, please contact us,” he said.

Delays hamper police inquiry

In a heartfelt plea, her husband, Thomas, said he was going through “hell” with only hope keeping him going. “It’s just devastating,” he said.

“I just hope somebody saw something or she will just walk through the door.”

Hoping for a clue on Jill’s path

He said he couldn’t allow himself to believe his wife was no longer alive.

Mr Meagher has appealed for help from the public using Facebook and flyers posted around the area.

“I just want as much out there as possible,” he said.

“It’s Friday night on Sydney Rd, it’s busy – people have to have seen something. Somebody has to have seen Jill at some stage.

“I just want people to really think if they’ve seen anything at all.”

Mr Meagher rejected suggestions his wife was going through any personal problems.

Brother Michael McKeon, who arrived from Perth on Sunday, said Ms Meagher phoned him about 1.45am on Saturday to check on their father, who recently had a stroke.

“I suppose I was the last one to talk to her,” he said.

“She was just calling to see how things were. She hung up and she just sounded a little worried.

“I called back a few times and she never answered.

“It sounded like she was on her way home.”

Mr McKeon described his sister as happy-go-lucky, fun-loving and always positive.

“It’s not like her at all,” he said.

“She always does what she says she is going to do.”

Speaking of his parents, he said: “They’re just distraught and worried and just hoping for the best.”

Jill is described as being of a fair complexion, 165cm tall, slim build, long curly black hair and brown eyes.

She was wearing a blue dress, black jacket, black patterned stockings and high heels.

WHAT a difference a day makes to a homicide investigation.

On Monday the police hunt for the missing Jill Meagher concentrated on streets she might have used to walk home from a Sydney Rd bar in the small hours of Saturday morning.

Police ran crime scene tape across half a dozen streets and lanes in one seedy light-industrial block, apparently spurred on by the discovery of her handbag in a narrow side street early on Monday.

But by yesterday morning things had changed.

None other than the chief commissioner cast doubt on whether it was Ms Meagher who dropped the bag the night she vanished.

Chief Commissioner Ken Lay hinted the bag might have been “planted” by an unknown offender in an attempt to distract investigators – who, he said, had already searched the area where the bag turned up.
But the homicide rulebook states that before widening the search, detectives first have to eliminate the people closest to the missing person.

That means the proud young man, photographed with his bride in the good times they shared, now has to endure the routine procedure of being treated like a potential suspect.

Within three hours of the chief’s cryptic statement, the search had swung from the mean streets where the bag was found to the nearby modern apartment block where Thomas and Jill Meagher have lived for about a year.

Just after midday two homicide detectives had returned to the Meaghers’ first-floor apartment to run the worried young husband once more through the exact sequence of events in the hours his wife vanished.

Then the cavalry arrived.

Two vans parked on a nearby council reserve. In them was a team of four forensic crime scene analysts, dressed head to toe in blue protective clothing and carrying a pile of oversize empty paper bags.

They, too, trooped upstairs into the rear apartment on the first floor.

They did not use the lift that takes residents and their shopping or luggage up and down from the ground-floor internal carpark enclosed under the three residential floors.

The apartment was so full of forensic specialists looking for clues that Tom Meagher and his wife’s brother Michael McKeon had to sit outside on the balcony at the rear.

For more than two hours the pair sat in glum silence, fiddling with their mobile telephones. They were joined at one point by a female detective wearing rubber gloves.

Mr Meagher was showing the strain of four days of hell. He appeared not to have shaved since the weekend and his eyes were red.

Earlier, before the forensic team started combing the apartment, he and his brother-in-law had put on a brave face by laughing and joking with camera crews outside the apartments.

There was no joking by 4pm when the forensic team finally emerged with half a dozen brown paper bags, all full.

Police said no evidence was taken from the flat, but it looked as if a lot of material had been removed for testing at the forensic laboratories at Macleod, which has hi-tech equipment to test DNA and fingerprints.

Early in the day, Tom Meagher told the Herald Sun he would consider talking about his ordeal.

But he later got in touch to say he would be too busy going through some details with the police.

While investigators combed the Meaghers’ apartment yesterday, their colleagues pinpointed security camera footage of Jill Meagher taken at 1.41am on Saturday morning in Sydney Rd, just south of Hope St.

This tallies with information from the staff at Bar Etiquette, the fashionable nightspot where the beautiful and popular young Irishwoman had a last drink after a long night out with colleagues from the ABC radio studios in Southbank.

Bar Etiquette staff stopped serving and locked the door to new customers at 1am.

But it let existing customers out over the following half hour or so.

It seems beyond doubt Ms Meagher left the bar just after 1.30am and walked north up Sydney Rd, apparently alone. She had earlier told work colleague Tom Wright she was happy to walk home alone after he twice offered to escort her.

Sometime after that, she vanished.

The investigation is continuing.

ANALYSIS: THE Investigator Charlie Bezzina examines the scene where ABC radio worker Jill Meagher went missing.

As an investigator I’m scratching my head.

The first thing you do is to ask yourself why someone would pick Jill out.

If in fact foul play is involved, it is still possible she may well still emerge safe and sound and we hope that is the case.

Something isn’t quite right to me. If it’s a robbery, they take the bag and go. Why take the victim?

Looking around the scene, it’s a very good spot to launch an attack or assault or abduction.

More pictures from the search scene

Its industrial and there’s not people living here, even though it’s near Sydney Rd.

The lighting is poor.

I suspect everyone until I can rule them out of the investigation.

And there are some crazy people whose behaviour you just can predict.

She had her ATM card but there is no facility for police to check her card movement – we have to wait until business hours Monday.

You are in the hands of the corporate world.

It’s so crucial to investigators but we just don’t have that clout. Police and crime happen 24 hours a day seven days a week and it’s a problem for investigators that we can’t do it.

Your chances of solving a case are best in the first 24 hours. It’s now been more than 48 hours.

I’m surprised they didn’t conduct a line search sooner. The line search will indicate any evidence, including forensic.

They would be looking for blood, anything that will indicate a crime has been committed.

With missing persons, you need to do things early to get the evidence. Time is of the essence. It’s critical to make an assessment early in the piece if it is serious.

There might be reasons for it, but my usual process would be a line search along the route.

Only about 50-60m is cordoned off, but widening it would include searching drains, rooftops, front yards.

If she was hurt, you’d think she would have been found.

Getting someone to go somewhere against their will is not easy, and would need a car.

Someone else might have been leaving at the same time and followed her from the bar, so its important to track down people who were at the bar at the same time.

You have to open up your mind to looking at any criminal reports in that area – there may have been reports of attempted abductions, burglaries, peeping toms.

I’d be going to all the local bars to ask regulars if they saw anything. People often won’t come to you so you need to go to them.

I’d suggest flooding the area next Friday night and saturate the area around midnight, talking to people who may have been out at the same time the week before.

You never write off that someone may have simply left. It would still be open that she may have gone missing by choice.

That’s why you speak to neighbours, including at previous addresses. We need to get to know the victim.

The handbag being found doesn’t really add much to the picture – it may have been planted there, it may have been discarded there on purpose or fallen accidentally.

The area is an industrial area and would be very quiet at that time of the morning

There would have been activity alone Sydney rd., but once she turns off that, it’s quiet

If we take it it’s an abduction, they are very rare.

Homicide would come out to oversee things as its not clear as yet whether it is a homicide or not.

Someone may have been infatuated with her, stalked her. Is it opportunity, or planned?

Ms Meagher’s brother, Michael McKeon, believes he was the last person to speak to her.

Mr McKeon, who arrived from Perth yesterday, said Ms Meagher called him in the early hours of Saturday to check on their father who recently had a stroke. He believes she called at about 1.45am.

“She was just calling to see how things were,” Mr McKeon said.

“She hung up and just sounded a little worried.

“It sounded like she was on her way home.

“I called back a few times and she never answered.”

Mr McKeon described his sister as happy go lucky, fun loving and always positive.

“It’s not like her at all,” he said.

“She always does what she says she is going to do.”

It is now more than 48 hours since Ms Meagher was last seen after mysteriously vanishing following a night out with work friends.

Ms Meagher had been drinking for several hours at The Brunswick Green bar on Sydney Rd before catching a final drink at nearby Bar Etiquette, where she was a regular.

Police will door knock in Melbourne’s north today as the hunt for the 29-year-old, who works as a unit coordinator with ABC radio, intensifies.

She insisted that she wanted to walk home alone, a friend has revealed.

Her distraught husband, Thomas, is still holding out hope his wife will walk through the door safe and well.

Mr Meagher said he was going through hell as he anxiously waited for news about his wife.

“I’m just trying to push on,” he said.

“I just hope somebody saw something or she will just walk through the door.”

He said he couldn’t allow himself to believe his wife was no longer alive.

Mr Meagher has appealed for help from the public using Facebook and flyers posted around the area.

“Friday night on Sydney Rd it’s busy – people have to have seen something,” he said.

“Somebody has to have seen Jill at some stage.”

Mr Meagher told 3AW radio station this morning that he rang his wife’s mobile phone “non-stop” from 2am to 6am on Saturday with no success.

He also went out looking for her at about 5am.

“Her phone has gone flat,” he said.

Det Acting Sgt Steve Bull said police were treating the disappearance of Ms Meagher very seriously.

“We have concerns for her safety. This is totally out of character for Jill and we just haven’t been able to find her,” he said.

Phone records which could shed vital clues into the disappearance of Ms Meagher are due to be retrieved today.

ABC Local Radio has released a statement about the disappearance of Ms Meagher.

“Friends and colleagues of Jill Meagher are saddened and concerned by the news of Jill’s disappearance,” the statement said.

“Jill is the Unit Coordinator of Local Radio Victoria. She is a highly valued and much loved member of the Local Radio team.

“Our thoughts are will Jill’s family and friends during this very difficult time.”

ABC colleagues also told of their distress today.

“Jill works with us here at 774 ABC Melbourne. She is our unit manager. She keeps the place running. She is a delightful colleague and it’s impossible to imagine that something bad may have happened,” 774 host Jon Faine said.

Reporter Rochelle Hunt said Ms Meagher’s disapperance “was one of the most difficult stories any of us at the ABC has had to try and cover”.

“Jill is a dear friend and colleague of ours and hasn’t been seen since Saturday morning,” Ms Hunt said.

“I know everyone at the ABC is absolutely distraught at the moment.”

Another ABC colleague, Tom Wright, told the Herald Sun he was the last person to see Ms Meagher.

Mr Wright offered to walk her home, but she declined.

“I said, ‘can I walk you home?’, because it’s late at night, and she said: ‘No, no I live around here, I know it really well, don’t worry’. I said goodbye and I said, ‘really, you don’t want me to walk you home?’, and she said: ‘No, no, no’,” Mr Wright said.

An Irish cousin of Ms Meagher’s said that her family is “desperate” for information on her whereabouts.

The cousin, who didn’t wish to be named, told the Herald Sun that Ms Meagher’s parents were “distraught” at hearing of their daughter’s disappearance and were hoping that police would be able to uncover more details by examining CCTV footage.

“My mother has been speaking with her mum and dad in Perth and they really just feel as if their hands are tied,” he said.

“Her brother has travelled from Perth to Melbourne but they are all just waiting to get more information from police.”

The man said that Ms Meagher’s family, which includes relatives in Spain and England, continued to be baffled by her mysterious disappearance.

“As far as we know she was out with colleagues and she was very close to her home when she went missing,” he said.

“That’s what’s killing us.”

The cousin, who last saw Ms Meagher when she visited Ireland last year, described her as a “bubbly” person with a “big time happy-go-lucky” outlook on life.

He said that they had stayed in touch via Facebook and occasional visits since she moved to Australia from her home town of Drogheda on Ireland’s east coast.

He said Ms Meagher’s disappearance was “all over” the Irish national news.

He is now helping to support a social media campaign spearheaded by Ms Meagher’s husband, which is already being followed by Irish celebrities including pop-group Westlife

Ms Meagher, who moved to Australia from Ireland three years ago, had been drinking with work friends from ABC radio and lived a short walk from the bar.

Mr Meagher said he was “freaking out”.

“She didn’t take her purse out, so she didn’t have any identification or anything on her other than her bank card,” he said yesterday.

“We’ve checked with all the hospitals, but I think that someone has done something to her.

“I fear that because it’s not something she would do without contacting anybody.”

Mr Wright said Ms Meagher had expressed some anxiety about her job, but otherwise seemed upbeat.

“She said to me she was having some sort of mid-life crisis – she didn’t really expand on it,” he said.

“There was nothing to suggest disappearing as abruptly as she did.”

Mr Wright said he was riddled with guilt about not taking her home.

Although she was captured on CCTV in at least one bar, the vision has not helped the investigation, police said.

“We still have more to review, but we’re hoping someone may have seen her and can shed a bit further light on what her movements might have been,” a spokesman said.

A Facebook page has been set up and people are sending Ms Meagher’s image to other networking sites in the that hope someone comes forward with information.

Colleagues, friends and relatives have also put out appeals for public help on Twitter, using the hashtag #JillMeagher

Ms Meagher is described as being of a fair complexion, 165cm tall, slim build, long curly black hair and brown eyes.

She was wearing a blue dress, black jacket, black patterned stockings and high heels.

Anyone with information on Ms Meagher should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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Paul Charles Denyer -The Frankston Serial Killer


Paul Charles Denyer

A.K.A.: “The Frankston Serial Killer

Classification: Serial killer

Characteristics: Transsexual – He hated women in general

Number of victims: 3

Date of murders: June-July 1993

Date of arrest: July 31, 1993

Date of birth: April 14, 1972

Victims profile: Elizabeth Stevens, 18 / Debbie Fream, 22 / Natalie Russell, 17

Method of murder: Stabbing with knife / Strangulation

Location: Melbourne, Australia

Status: Sentenced to life in prison on December 20, 1993

UPDATE 08/05/12

FRANKSTON serial killer Paul Denyer is being investigated over claims he raped a fellow prisoner.

Police are currently interviewing Denyer over the alleged rape on April 14 at Port Phillip Prison.

The incident allegedly occurred when Denyer, who in 1993 killed three women in a hate-filled rage, raped a fellow inmate after what initially started as a massage.

Appearing via video-link before Melbourne Magistrates’ Court, Denyer refused to face the monitor but told Magistrate Michelle Ehrlich he understood what the investigation was about and consented to questioning.

Magistrate Ehrlich granted police, from Footscray’s sexual crimes unit, four hours in which to interview Denyer after investigators lodged a 464B application to question the suspect in custody.

Late last year, Denyer also faced an interview inside the maximum-security jail by homicide detectives over missing woman Sarah MacDiarmid, who disappeared in 1990.

He denied any knowledge of the MacDiarmid case.

Paul Charles Denyer (b. 1972) is an Australian serial killer, currently serving life imprisonment in HM Prison Barwon for the murders of Elizabeth Stevens, 18, Debbie Fream, 22, and Natalie Russell, 17 in Frankston, Victoria in 1993.

Denyer is known as the Frankston Serial Killer due to his crimes occurring within the Frankston area. The Frankston Serial Killer was featured in the pilot episode of the Seven Network show Forensic Investigators.

Early life

When Denyer was a child his mother recalls him rolling from a table and hurting his head. He once cut the family’s kitten and hung it from a tree. At school, he once assaulted a fellow student whilst the victim was chewing a pen, causing the pen to become lodged in the victims throat.

Sex reassignment requests

Whilst imprisoned, Denyer has requested to be allowed to purchase and wear ladies cosmetics, a request which was denied.

Denyer also filed freedom of information requests to learn of the Victorian government’s policy on gender reassignment surgery for prisoners and has sought evaluation to determine his suitablity for such surgery, which was also rejected by medical specialists.

Murders

Denyer was 21 at the time of his crimes. During a police interview, Denyer’s motivation for his crimes was revealed when he replied to questions stating he hated women in general.

POLICE: Can you explain why we have women victims?
DENYER: I just hate them.

POLICE: I beg your pardon.
DENYER: I hate them.

POLICE: Those particular girls or women in general?
DENYER: General.


The Frankston Serial Killer: Paul Charles Denyer

by Paul B. Kidd


Frankston, Victioria, Australia 1993

Over a seven week period in the summer of  1993, three young women, ages 17, 18 and 22, were violently stabbed and slashed to death — one in broad daylight, in and around Frankston, about a 40-minute drive from Melbourne on Port Phillip Bay in south eastern Victoria. Another 41-year-old woman was violently assaulted and considered herself lucky to escape with her life.

None of the victims knew each other and there was nothing to connect them in any way except that they all lived in the Frankston district. After the first two murders and an assault in which the victim escaped, it became clear to police that there was a serial killer on the loose. The killer chose his victims at random and murdered for no apparent reason. Their theory was tragically proved correct when another young woman was  murdered a short time later.

And when he was eventually caught, the serial killer turned out to be a local, Paul Charles Denyer, a 6-foot, very overweight, 21-year-old man who answered to the nickname of John Candy, after the (now deceased) funnyman of such movies as Uncle Buck, The Blues Brothers and Cool Runnings.

But Paul Denyer, the John Candy look-a-like serial killer was no funny man. He was a pudgy, dysfunctional misfit, an oafish character and self-confessed misogynist who was always going to be a monster. As a child he slit the throats of his sister’s toy bears and grew up obsessed with blood and gore movies such as The Stepfather, Fear and Halloween, which he watched over and over.

Paul Denyer was a beast who slit the throat of the family kitten with his brother’s pocketknife and hung the dead animal from a tree branch. After his arrest for murder it was discovered that it was Denyer who had disemboweled a friend’s cat and slit the throats of it’s kittens. Killing human beings was only a matter of time.

When he was captured, Denyer displayed absolutely no emotion as he told horrified police how he murdered the three women. He also told arresting officers that he had had the urge to kill since he was 14.  “I’ve always wanted to kill, waiting for the right time, waiting for that silent alarm to trigger me off,” he told them.

The Frankston Serial Killer was born Paul Charles Denyer in Sydney on April 14, 1972, the third of six children, five boys and a girl to English working class immigrants, Maureen and Anthony Denyer, who came to Australia in 1965 and eventually settled in Campbelltown near Sydney.

The only significant thing about Paul Denyer’s infancy was that as a baby he rolled off a bench and knocked his head. This became a family joke for many years and whenever he would say or do anything out of the ordinary it would prompt the comment “that’s because you fell on your head as a baby.”

Denyer had trouble mixing with the other kids at kindergarten but seemed to grow out of this by the time he reached primary school and was just one of the normal kids. But that all changed when the family moved to Victoria in 1981 so that Anthony Denyer could take up the position as manager of The Steak Place in Centre Road, South Oakleigh, on the Frankston train line.

None of Anthony Denyer’s children approved of the move. They were happy at Campbelltown and Paul especially found it extremely hard to make the adjustment. At his new school, Northvale Primary, he was a completely different boy, a loner who found it difficult to make friends and who lacked self-confidence and was totally unmotivated.

To make matters worse, Paul Denyer grew into a big lump of a lad, much taller and a lot fatter than the other kids. And instead of playing with the usual things that would occupy a boy of his age, he grew up fascinated with his collection of knives and clubs and home-made slingshot-guns that fired pebbles or ball bearings.

His murderous intentions started at an early age when he regularly dissected his sister’s teddy bears with a homemade knife, and when he was 10, he stabbed the family kitten and hung it from a tree in the backyard. Later on, while working at what would be his last place of employment, he allegedly slaughtered and dismembered two goats in a paddock next door.

Just before his thirteenth birthday Paul Denyer was charged with stealing a car and was released with a warning.  Two months later he was he was in trouble again and charged with making a false report to the fire brigade, theft and willful damage. At age 15, Denyer forced another boy to masturbate in front of some children and was charged with assault.

In 1992 he entered into a relationship with Sharon Johnson, a girl he had met while working at Safeway’s Supermarket, a job that came to an end when he allegedly deliberately knocked down a woman and a child with a convoy of empty shopping trolleys.

Denyer then applied to join the Victorian Police Force but was rejected on the grounds that he was unfit due to his massive bulk. Denyer’s last place of employment was a marine workshop where he was ultimately fired because he spent more time making crude knives and daggers than he did doing his work.

By 1993, Denyer was a social outcast. He was unable  to hold down a job through a mixture of laziness and incompetence. Now nicknamed John Candy after the rotund film star because of his bulk and physical appearance,  Denyer developed a fixation for death, the macabre and horrific murder movies such as The Stepfather which he watched repeatedly.

In 1992 Denyer moved into a flat in Dandenong Road, Frankston, with Sharon Johnson. With Denyer unemployed, Sharon held down two jobs by selling over the phone. With plenty of idle time on Paul Denyer’s hands it wasn’t long before some unusual things started to happen around the block of flats.

One tenant arrived home to find her flat broken into and her clothes and engagement pictures slashed. Another caught the glimpse of someone peeping at her through a window. But the most disturbing of all was what happened to the sister of Tricia, a girl who lived in the same block of flats as Paul Denyer and Sharon Johnson.

Denyer and Johnson had become quite friendly with their neighbor Tricia and her sister Donna, who lived with her fiancé Les and Donna’s tiny baby in a block of flats nearby.

One night in February 1993, Les and Donna arrived home at about 11 p.m. with the baby in a bassinette after working Les’s late night pizza delivery run, to be confronted with the most horrific scene. On the lounge room wall next to the television set and written in blood were the words “Dead Don.” Lying on the floor in the middle of the kitchen was the remains of Donna’s cat Buffy, with a picture of a bikini-clad woman strewn over its disemboweled body.

The cat’s entrails had been dragged through the kitchen and scattered about the walls and the cat’s blood was sprayed everywhere. Written in blood in the middle of it all were the words “Donna – You’re Dead.” One of Buffy’s eyes was bulging from its socket. The other eye was missing, apparently ripped out of the unfortunate cat’s head and discarded.

In the bathroom they found Buffy’s two kittens with their throats cut lying in a baby’s bath of bloodied water. In the laundry there was blood everywhere, sprayed all up the walls and all over a plastic laundry basket full of baby clothes.

In the main bedroom the intruder had ransacked every drawer and clothes were ripped and strewn everywhere. Les’s collection of centerfold pin-ups had been slashed and stabbed with a sharp instrument. Cupboard doors had been kicked and beaten, leaving splintered gouges in them. The baby’s clothing had been slashed and a stabbed photo of a semi-clad model was draped across the baby’s crib. The words “Donna and Robyn” had been sprayed in white shaving foam on the dressing table mirror.

Donna didn’t have the faintest idea who the mysterious Robyn was and she never spent another night at the flat, instead staying temporarily with her sister Tricia until she found alternative accommodations.

Tricia’s neighbor, Paul Denyer, who knew Donna quite well through Tricia, told Donna that she would be safe now and that if the police ever caught the person responsible he would personally take care of him for her.

On Saturday, June 12, 1993, the partially-clothed body of 18-year-old student Elizabeth Stevens was found in Lloyd Park on the Cranbourne Road, Langwarrin, a short drive from Frankston. The teenager had been reported missing the previous evening by her uncle and aunt whom she was staying with.

Naked from the waist up, Elizabeth Stevens had had her throat cut, there were six deep knife wounds to her chest, four deep cuts running from her breast to her navel and four more running at right angles forming a macabre criss-cross pattern on her abdomen. Elizabeth Stevens’ face had several cuts and abrasions and her nose was swollen indicating that it had been broken. Her bra was up around her neck. A post-mortem would reveal that she hadn’t been sexually assaulted.

The killing was as senseless as it was brutal. Elizabeth didn’t have an enemy in the world. The attack had to be that of a random killer or perhaps a rape gone wrong. Police mounted a huge search for the killer. They used a life-sized mannequin at a roadblock at the bus stop where Elizabeth Stevens was last seen  in the hope that someone may recognize her and hopefully the person she may have been with.

They knocked on every door in the district and questioned bus drivers and passengers who were on Elizabeth Stevens’ last known bus ride. They checked out every known library in the vicinity of where she was last known to have been. It all amounted to nothing.

On the evening of  July 8, 1993, 41-year-old bank clerk Roszsa Toth was making her way home from work to Seaford in the Frankston district when she was violently attacked by a man who said he had a gun and tried to drag her into a nearby nature reserve.

Mrs. Toth put up a  fight for her life during which the man pulled out clumps of her hair  and she bit his fingers to the bone on several occasions. She eventually fought the man off and with torn stockings and trousers and no shoes she managed to hail down a passing car as her assailant fled into the night. Roszsa Toth had little doubt that had she not resisted so strongly she would have most definitely been murdered.

Mrs. Toth rang the police who were at the scene of the assault within minutes. They found nothing. Later that same evening 22-year-old Debbie Fream who had given birth to a son, Jake, 12 days earlier, went missing after she drove to her local store at Seaford to pick up a bottle of milk while in the middle of preparing dinner.

Four days later her body was found by a farmer in one of his paddocks at nearby Carrum Downs. Debbie Fream had been stabbed about the neck, head, chest and arms 24 times. She had also been strangled. She had not been sexually assaulted.

The attack of Roszsa Toth, which had been considered a purse snatching gone horribly wrong, was now considered to be the work of the same killer of Elizabeth Stevens and Debbie Fream. There was a madman on the loose in Frankston.

The women of the Frankston district locked themselves indoors and the streets were noticeably deserted at night. Real estate sales and rental inquiries plummeted. Frankston became known as the place where a serial killer lurked among its residents and everyone was a suspect. Every day the newspapers gave an update and detailed reports of the huge police manhunt that was underway to track down the killer.

Police were relentless in their investigations. Every lead, no matter how small, was followed up and even the slightest clue as to the assailant’s identity was looked into immediately. A help center named Operation Reassurance was set up to advise local women what they  should do if  attacked by the Frankston Serial Killer and how to prevent from being attacked in the first place.

But it was to no avail. On the afternoon of July 30,  17-year-old Natalie Russell went missing while riding her bike home from the John Paul College in Frankston. Eight hours later, her body was found in the bushes beside a bike track that ran between the Peninsula and the Long Island Golf clubs. She had been stabbed repeatedly about the face and neck and her throat had been cut. It appeared that the savagery in Natalie Russell’s slaying  was far worse than in the previous two victims.  Natalie had not been sexually assaulted.

But this time the killer had left a damning piece of evidence that would prove him guilty should he be apprehended. A piece of skin, possibly from a finger, was found on the neck of the dead girl. It didn’t belong to the victim; the only other possible explanation was that the killer had cut himself as he attacked the student and the slither of flesh had attached itself -  stuck by dried blood – onto her skin.

The other good news was the sighting of a yellow Toyota Corona on a road near the bike track at 3 p.m., the time the coroner estimated that Natalie Russell had been murdered. The observant police officer had written down its number from its registration label because the car had no plates.

Back at the police station, detectives fed the registration number into their computer. It matched up with a report from a postman who had spotted a man slumped in a suspicious position, as if to avoid being seen, in the front seat of a yellow Toyota Corona.  A quick check through the computer also revealed that the same car had been spotted in the vicinity where Debbie Fream’s body had been found. Three sightings of the one vehicle were  just too much of a coincidence.

The car was registered to a Paul Charles Denyer who wasn’t home when detectives Mick Hughes and Charlie Bezzina called at his address at 3.40 p.m. They left a card under the door asking him to contact them as soon as he arrived home. At 5.15 p.m. the detectives received a call from a Sharon Johnson and, so as not to frighten Denyer away, she was told that it was merely a ‘routine inquiry’ and that they were interviewing everyone in the district. Within 10 minutes, a team of detectives, headed by Mick Hughes, Rod Wilson and CIB Detective Darren O’Loughlin, converged at the block of flats at 186 Frankston‑Dandenong Road.

Paul Denyer answered the door and commented that he was surprised to see so many detectives for just a routine inquiry, but he cheerily let them in. He explained that while his car had no plates he had a permit to drive it for 28 days while he made necessary repairs to have it registered.

As Denyer explained his whereabouts at the time of the murders, the detectives noticed that his hands were cut in several places. From one cut, the skin was missing and they mentally noted that the missing piece would have resembled that which was found on Natalie Russell’s body.

Although he admitted to being in the vicinity of two of the murders at the time they were believed to have taken place, Denyer steadfastly denied any knowledge of the killings other than what he had read in the papers. He offered weak excuses for being at the murder scenes, saying that his car had broken down near the place where Natalie Russell was murdered and that he was waiting to pick up his girlfriend from the train on the other occasion. He explained the scratches away by saying that he got his hands caught in the fan while working underneath the bonnet of the car.

But there was no fooling the seasoned detectives. They knew they had their man and that it was only a matter of time before he would crack. Taken to Frankston police station and questioned in an interrogation room while being video‑recorded, Denyer maintained his innocence through to the early hours of the following morning. But he knew his number was up when police asked for a blood sample and a sample of his hair and told him that a DNA test would match him to anything on his vic­tim that came from him.

Denyer asked some questions about how long the DNA results would take and whether or not the police had something with which to compare his DNA. Then he thought for a bit and, out of the blue, volunteered, “Okay, I killed all three of them,” to Detective Darren O’Loughlin.

Just before 4 o’clock on the morning of August 1, 1993, Paul Denyer began his confession to the murders of Elizabeth Stevens, Debbie Fream and Natalie Russell, and the attack on Roszsa Toth. He told them that at around 7 p.m. on the bleak, rainy evening of June 11, 1993, Elizabeth Stevens got off a bus on Cranbourne Road, Langwarrin, to walk the short distance to her home. Paul Denyer was waiting – not for Elizabeth in particular. Anyone. Just someone to kill. Elizabeth Stevens just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Denyer followed the young student along the street in the dense rain and grabbed her from behind, telling her that he had a gun and that if she screamed or tried to run away he would kill her. He told detectives that the “gun” he held in her back was in fact a piece of aluminum piping with a wooden handle. At “gunpoint,” Denyer marched the terrified girl to nearby Lloyd Park.

Denyer’s statement said in part: “Walked in a bit of bushland beside the main track in Lloyd Park. Sat there, you know, stood in the bushes for a while just – I can’t remember, just standing there I suppose. I held the ‘gun’ to the back of her neck, walked across the track over towards the other small sandhill or something. And on the other side of that hill, she asked me if she could, you know – go to the toilet, so to speak. So I respected her privacy. So I turned around and everything while she did it and everything. When she finished we just walked down towards where the goal posts are and we turned right and headed towards the area where she was found. I got to that area there and I started choking her with my hands and she passed out after a while. You know, the oxygen got cut off to her head and she just stopped. And then I pulled out the knife … and stabbed her many times in the throat. And she was still alive. And then she stood up and then we walked around and all that, just walking around a few steps, and then I threw her on the ground and stuck my foot over her neck to finish her off.”

The manner in which Denyer gave his confession chilled the detectives to the bone. It was devoid of emotion or remorse —  almost flippant. When the detectives asked questions they were answered in an almost condescending manner, as if Denyer was in complete control of the situation because he was the only one who knew what had actually happened.

Denyer described, matter-of-factly, and demonstrated how he had pushed his thumb into Elizabeth Stevens’s throat and strangled her. He made a stabbing motion, showing how he stabbed and slashed her throat. Then, to the astonishment of the detectives, he demonstrated for the video camera how Elizabeth Stevens’s body had begun shaking and shuddering as she went through the death rattles before finally dying.

Denyer then told police how he had dragged Elizabeth Stevens’s body to the drain and left it, where it was eventually found. He explained that the blade of the homemade knife he had used to stab Elizabeth Stevens  had bent during the assault and had broken away from the handle. He dumped the pieces beside the road as he made his way from the murder scene.

When asked why he had killed Elizabeth Stevens, Denyer replied: “Just wanted … just wanted to kill. Just wanted to take a life because I felt my life had been taken many times.”

After a long and detailed confession to the first murder, Paul Denyer went on to tell of the events of the night of July 8, 1993. He told detectives Wilson and O’Loughlin that he approached Mrs. Toth from behind after he had seen her walking near the Seaford station. He put a hand over her mouth and held a fake gun to her head with the other hand. Mrs Toth resisted strongly and bit his finger to the bone.

The couple wrestled and Mrs Toth escaped from his grasp and ran out into the middle of the road, but none of the passing cars stopped. Denyer chased after her, grabbed her by the hair and said: “Shut up, or I’ll blow your fucking head off,” and the woman nodded in agreement but again escaped and this time managed to flag down a passing car while Denyer fled.

When asked what he intended to do to Mrs Toth, Denyer replied coolly: “I was just gonna drag her in the park and kill her — that’s all.” Denyer said that, as well as the fake gun, he was carrying one of his homemade knives with a razor-sharp aluminum blade in his sock.

After the near miss with Mrs. Toth, Denyer went to the nearby railway station and casually boarded the Frankston-bound train. He got off at Kananook, the next station along, and crossed over the rail overpass bridge in search of another victim. Here he sighted Debbie Fream getting out of her grey Pulsar and go into the milk bar on the corner.

Denyer said that while Debbie Fream was in the milk bar, he opened the rear door of her car, let himself into the back, and closed the door behind him. He crouched in the back seat and listened as her footsteps came back to the car, and she got in and drove away. “I waited for her to start up the car so no one would hear her scream or anything,“Denyer said in his confession. “And she put it into gear and she went to do a U-turn. I startled her just as she was doing that turn and she kept going into the wall of the milk bar, which caused a dent in the bonnet. I told her to, you know, shut up or I’d blow her head off and all that shit.”

Denyer said that he held the fake gun in her side. The detectives asked Denyer if he had noticed anything in the back and he said that he had seen a baby capsule beside him in the back seat. Denyer must have known that he was about to kill a young mother. Obviously, it made the least scrap of difference to him.

Denyer told Debbie Fream in which direction to drive. It was to an area that he knew well and knew he wouldn’t be seen as he murdered her. ‘I told her when we got there that if she gave any signals to anyone, I’d blow her head off, I’d decorate the car with her brains,’ Denyer told the police.

Denyer told her to stop the car near some trees and get out, and he pulled a length of cord from his pocket. “I popped it over her eyes real quickly, so she didn’t see it . . .’cause I was gonna strangle her. But I didn’t want her to see the cord first. I lifted the cord up and I said: “Can you see this?” And she just put her hand up to grab it to feel it and when she did that I just yanked on it real quickly around her neck. And then I was struggling with her for about five minutes.” Denyer said that he strangled Debbie Fream until she started to pass out. He then drew the knife from his sock and repeatedly stabbed her about the neck and chest. When she fell limp at his feet he set upon her with the knife, stabbing her many times in the neck and once in the stomach.

“She started breathing out of her neck, just like Elizabeth Stevens,” he told the detectives. “I could just hear bubbling noises.” When asked if Debbie Fream put up any resistance, Denyer replied: “Yeah, she put up quite a fight. And her white jumper was pulled off during that time as well. I just felt the same way I did when I killed Elizabeth Stevens.”

The detectives then asked Denyer what happened after he had stabbed her round the chest and throat area. “I lifted up her top and then ploughed the knife into her gut. I wanted to see how big her boobs were.” He said that when he saw Debbie’s bare stomach he ‘”just lunged at it with the knife.”

Satisfied that Debbie Fream was dead, Denyer dragged her body into a clump of trees and covered it over with a couple of branches he broke from the nearest tree. He then spent about five minutes looking for the murder weapon which he had dropped after the killing, found it and put it in his pocket. He drove off in Debbie Fream’s car, dumped it close to where he lived, and walked home in time to ring Sharon at work and pick her up at the Kananook railway station.

The following morning, he brazenly returned to Debbie Fream’s car and collected her purse and the two cartons of milk, eggs, chocolate and a packet of cigarettes she had purchased from the milk bar the previous evening, and took them home with him. The only thing of value he found in the purse was a $20 note.

He emptied the milk down the sink, threw out the eggs and burned the carton, as he considered this to be evidence that could be used against him. He then buried the dead woman’s purse in the nearby golf course and near the bike track where he would later kill Natalie Russell. Denyer then dismantled his homemade knife and hid the parts in the air vent in the laundry of his apartment.

“Why did you kill her?” the detectives asked him.

“Same reason why I killed Elizabeth Stevens. I just wanted to,” he replied.

As the sun rose on that Sunday morning, 12 hours after they had started questioning Paul Denyer at Frankston police station, the weary detectives began questioning him about the murder of Natalie Russell.

If the detectives were showing any signs of weariness, what they were about to hear would shock them back to attentiveness with a jolt. Denyer’s almost unbelievable confession to the murder of Natalie Russell would put him among the most despicable monsters this country has ever known. Denyer had planned his next murder in advance. His intention was to abduct a young woman, any young woman, as she walked along the bike track that runs alongside the Flora and Fauna Reserve in nearby Langwarrin, drag his victim into the reserve and murder her.

He had gone to his planned abduction spot earlier in the day and, with a pair of pliers, had cut three holes a few metres apart in the cyclone wire fence that ran between the bike track and the reserve. Each hole was cut big enough to fit him and his victim through into the cover of tree-lined reserve.

At about 2:30 that afternoon, he drove back to the start of the bike track in Skye Road and waited for a victim to enter on foot. His plan was to follow his victim and, as they approached a hole in the fence, he would grab her and take her through it and into the reserve. He was armed with a razor-sharp homemade knife and a leather strap which he intended to use to strangle his victim. After a wait of about 20 minutes, he saw a girl in a blue school uniform come out of the road where John Paul College was and enter the bike track. He followed.

“I stuck about 10 yards behind her until I got to the second hole,” Denyer told the detectives. “And just when I got to that hole, I quickly walked up behind her and stuck my left hand around her mouth and held the knife to her throat…and that’s where that cut happened.” Denyer then indicated the cut on his thumb from which the piece of skin was missing. “I cut that on my own blade.”

Denyer said that Natalie was struggling at first when he grabbed her but stopped when he told her that if she didn’t he would cut her throat. The terrified girl then offered Denyer sex, which disgusted him as he clearly failed to see that Natalie must have realized that she was in the hands of the Frankston Serial Killer and would have done anything, even if it meant having sex with him, to save her life.

“She said, ‘You can have all my money, have sex with me,’ and things – just said disgusting things like that, really,” Denyer told the detectives as he shook his head in revulsion at what he obviously interpreted as the schoolgirl’s loose morals. Nothing could have been further from the truth.

Upset, Denyer forced Natalie to kneel in front of him and held the point of the knife very closely over her eye. Then he forced her to lie on the ground and he knelt over her, holding her by the throat and still holding the point of the knife over her eye. When she struggled he cut her across the face. She somehow managed to stand up and started to scream.

“And I just said, ‘Shut up. Shut up. Shut up. Shut up.’ And, ‘If you don’t shut up, I’ll kill you. If you don’t do this, I’ll kill you, if you don’t do that,’” Denyer told the detectives. “And she said, ‘What do you want from me?’ I said, ‘All I want you to do is shut up.’ And so when she was kneeling on the ground, I put the strap around her neck to strangle her and it broke in half. And then she started violently struggling for about a minute until I pushed ‑ got her onto her back again – and pushed her head back like this and cut her throat.’”

Denyer then demonstrated how he held Natalie Russell’s head back. ”I cut a small cut at first and then she was bleeding. And then I stuck my fingers into her throat … and grabbed her cords and I twisted them.”

The detectives could hardly believe what they were hearing, but somehow managed to contain their abhorrence so that they could prompt him to continue with his confession of horror.

“Why’d you do that?”

“My whole fingers – like, that much of my hand was inside her throat,” Denyer said as he held up his hand, indicating exactly how much of it he had forced into the wound in the schoolgirl’s throat.

“Do you know why you did that?” the detective asked again.

“Stop her from breathing … And then she slowly stopped. She sort of started to faint and then when she was weak, a bit weaker, I grabbed the opportunity of throwing her head back and one big large cut which sort of cut almost her whole head off. And then she slowly died.”

“Why did you kill her?” the shocked detectives asked, just managing to hold themselves back from being physically ill.

“Just same reason as before, just everything came back through my mind again. I kicked her before I left.”

Denyer then told the stunned detectives that he had kicked Natalie Russell’s body to make sure she was dead, slashed her down the side of her face with his knife and left her where she lay. As he walked back the way he had come in, his blood-soaked hands concealed in his pockets, Denyer saw two uniformed officers taking details from the registration sticker on his car, so he turned around and walked home the other way.

At home, he washed his clothes and hid the murder weapon in his backyard. He later picked up Sharon from her work and spent a quiet evening with her at her mother’s place.

The only emotion that Denyer had shown through the entire interview was when he was disgusted to think that the schoolgirl Natalie Russell would offer him sex. Outside of that it was almost as if he were proud of his achievements.

Then Denyer went on to confess to the slaughter of Donna’s cats. He said that he had brought a knife that afternoon with the sole purpose of “cutting Donna’s throat” because he “didn’t like her.” When he found no-one at home after he entered through a window he vented his anger on her cats.

Denyer told the detectives that he had been stalking women in the Frankston area “for years, just waiting for the right time, waiting for that silent alarm to trigger me off. Waiting for the sign.”

“Can you explain why we have women victims?” Detective O’Loughlin asked Denyer.

“I just hate ‘em.”

“I beg your pardon?” said O’Loughlin.

“I just hate ‘em,” Denyer repeated.

“Those particular girls,” asked O’Loughlin, in reference to Denyer’s victims, ”or women in general?”

“General.”

It seemed that the only woman on earth that Denyer didn’t hate was his lover Sharon Johnson, who had absolutely no knowledge of his  murderous activities. “Sharon’s not like anyone else I know. I’d never hurt her. She’s a kindred spirit,” Denyer told the detectives.

Paul Charles Denyer was charged with the murders of Elizabeth Stevens, Debbie Fream and Natalie Russell and the attempted murder of Roszsa Toth, which was later changed to the lesser charge of abduction.

At his trial,  on December 15, 1993, before Justice Frank Vincent at the Supreme Court of Victoria, Paul Denyer pleaded guilty to all charges.

The court heard from clinical psychologist Ian Joblin, who had been appointed to examine Denyer in prison while he was awaiting sentence. Mr Joblin told the court that, in his view, Denyer showed no remorse  for his crimes. In fact, he revelled in telling of the murders and seemed as if he got pleasure recounting them. Denyer blamed a number of things that had happened in his life for leading him down the path to serial murder. He said that his hard upbringing, the alleged sexual abuse by his elder brother and his habitual unemployment were the major contributing factors that caused him to murder young girls.

But the psychologist did not accept the excuses. He said that thousands of people in the community lived under similar circumstances and none of them had resorted to serial murder. Mr. Joblin told the court that of all of the adult offenders he had interviewed over the years – and there had been many – not one was even remotely close to the psychology of Paul Charles Denyer.

Mr. Joblin told the hushed court that Paul Denyer was a very rare breed – a killer who murdered at random and without motive – and this made him the most dangerous type of criminal. He said that Denyer had a cruel and demeaning nature. He had exhibited aggressive behavior since childhood and he seemed to be amused by the suffering that he had inflicted.

Mr. Joblin added that Paul Denyer was a sadist whose pleasure and satisfaction after each murder dissipated quickly so that he would again feel the desire to kill. He said that there was no effective treatment for Denyer’s sadistic personality. On December 20, 1993, Justice Vincent sentenced Paul Charles Denyer to three terms of life imprisonment with no fixed non‑parole period. In other words, the Frankston Serial Killer would spend the rest of his life behind bars without ever the possibility of release. Justice Vincent also gave Denyer an additional eight years for the abduction of Roszsa Toth.

Justice Vincent said: “The apprehension you have caused to thousands of women in the community will be felt for a long time. For many, you are the fear that quickens their step as they walk home, or causes a parent to look anxiously at the clock when a child is late.”

Paul Denyer appealed to the Full Court of the Supreme Court of Victoria against the severity of his sentence, and on July 29, 1994, he was granted a 30-year non-parole period, the equal highest non-parole period ever imposed in Victoria. The other recipient was triple murderer Ashley Coulston.

The families of Paul Denyer’s victims felt cheated by the Supreme Court’s decision, as they believed that the only possible sentence for Denyer was jail for life, never to be released. It seems that no one would argue with that except the Supreme Court judges. Only time will tell whether the Frankston Serial Killer will ever be allowed back into society.


Paul Denyer suspect in Murder Mystery Sarah MacDiarmid?

September 26, 2004

According to the father of victim Sarah MacDIARMID investigators have probed a house and it´s back yard using a sniffer dog without success.

Mr. MacDiarmid hoped that a TV-documentary would lead to new clues in the disappearance of his daughter Sarah.

Sarah was only 23 when she disappeared from the Kananook railway station on July 11, 1990. Blood stains were found near her Honda Civic, but no body was ever found.

The reward for any information was increased from 75,000 US$ to 1 million this February.

A group of private investigators recently named serial killer and woman hater Paul Denyer and his accomplice Jodi JONES as suspects in the case. JONES, who did from a heroin overdose in 1991 aged 26 once killed a man by trampling his chest with her stilettos.

Denyer is imprisoned for murdering three women in Frankstone during the 90s.

Police rejects those claims and any new clues in the murder mystery.


Serial killer stalks family from jail

September 29, 2004

SERIAL killer Paul Denyer has tracked down his estranged brother and sister-in-law on the other side of the world…A letter sent to the family, who fled Melbourne after death threats from Denyer, exposes a prison security loophole.

David Denyer said from his UK home yesterday he was at a loss to understand how the triple murderer had been able to find them while in maximum-security Barwon Prison.

David questioned how a man who had threatened to kill his wife and children was able to send him a letter from prison.

Denyer sent the hand-written airmail letter to the supermarket where David works in Surrey, south of London.

“Don’t be concerned about how I found your place of employment,” Denyer writes.

“You have nothing to be concerned about. There’s just a few things I wish to say.”

It is understood a third party may have provided contact details.

The sender is listed on the outside of the letter as Paula Denyer.

The Herald Sun has reported on Denyer’s continuing bid to be treated as a woman while inside the Lara men’s prison. In July, he lost a legal battle to wear makeup while in jail.

While the street name is wrong, the letter is addressed to David of Tesco in the Surrey town where he works. The town has only one Tesco store.

Corrections Victoria said that unless it was notified by the recipient of a letter that correspondence from a prisoner was unwanted, inmates could send letters to anyone.

But Corrections Commissioner Kelvin Anderson said no prisoners had access to the internet or to online search engines.

Mr Anderson said the prison governor could inspect letters if it was believed they were threatening or of a harassing nature. ..Crime Victims Support Association president Noel McNamara called for letters to be censored.

“What’s to stop him from writing to the victims’ families?” Mr McNamara asked.

Denyer, 32, murdered three women in a seven-week killing frenzy in bayside suburbs in 1993. He killed Elizabeth Stevens, 18, Debbie Fream, 22, and Natalie Russell, 17.

In the letter to his brother, dated August 19, Denyer apologises to David for sex abuse claims, which he said contributed to the murders.

“I’m sorry about allowing lies to be said about you David,” Denyer writes. “I have looked over my life and do not agree that once believed abuse from you contributed to my actions.”

David said yesterday he had always maintained the claims of childhood abuse were false.

“For a long time it caused a lot of personal pain, a lot of hardship in our family,” he said.

David and his UK-born wife, Julie, fled Australia in 1992 after Denyer cornered her in Frankston and threatened to kill her and their children.

“We left because of Paul; we left because of the harassment we were getting,” Mr Denyer said.

The family returned to Australia for five months last year, when Julie wrote to Denyer, explaining what he had done to his victims and their family.

David’s 19-year-old daughter picked up the letter from the Surrey store where she works with her father on Sunday, but was too afraid to hand it over. The couple’s 13-year-old daughter gave the letter to Julie.

“I shoved it up my jumper and I walked off to the toilet,” Julie said.

“I had to read the letter twice, and I thought ‘Oh, my God, it’s Paul’. We have just been in a daze ever since. We just can’t believe it – it will not go away. It scares me that he’s managed to find out where David works.”

She said her husband had suffered “breakdown after breakdown”.


Serial killer’s family shocked by letter

September 30, 2004

The estranged brother of Melbourne serial killer Paul Denyer was shocked and angry after receiving a letter from the jailed triple murderer at his workplace in Surry, south of London. Denyer is serving a minimum 30 year sentence at Victoria’s maximum security Barwon Prison for stabbing and strangling three young women in a seven week period in 1993 at Frankston in Melbourne’s south-east.

He had previously threatened to kill his brother David’s wife and children and made false allegations that David sexually abused him as a child. David Denyer today said he and his family had moved overseas to get away from his brother and had been shocked to receive the letter.

“First I was numb with shock, it was hard for me to understand,” he told Melbourne radio station 3AW.

“The more I’ve been thinking about it the last 24 hours, the more angry I have been becoming – it’s an insult to us, it really is.”

David Denyer said the system had failed his family and should be changed to make sure prisoners could not contact their victims. ..”It could have been the parents of one of the girls that he killed,” he said.

“We think we should get an apology because that is just not right.

“The law should be changed to stop prisoners from having any contact in any way shape or form with any of their victims or the victims’ families.”

In his letter, Paul Denyer apologised to his brother for alleging that he killed the three women because David had abused him as a child.

David Denyer today described how his brother had threatened his wife, Julie, in a Frankston shopping centre in 1992.

“He stood nose to nose with her and said basically ‘I am going to kill you and kill your kids’,” he said.

The arrival of the letter had shaken his wife, Mr Denyer said.

“She took the letter, went to the bathroom to read it, had to read it twice before she could even come to terms with the fact that she had this letter in her hands that was written by Paul,” he said.

Paul Denyer said he never wanted to hear from his brother again.

“As far as I’m concerned the man doesn’t exist,” he said.

“If he died tomorrow I wouldn’t shed a tear.”

Corrections Commissioner Kelvin Anderson has promised to speak with David Denyer about how the letter made it to his family.

In his letter Denyer says he got his brother’s address from a friend who is a music teacher in London.

Prisoners’ letters are currently scanned but not read before they are sent.

Denyer signed the letter as Paula, the name he has used since he began his bid for a sex change, which was refused in June this year.


Serial killer denied name change to Paula

December 11, 2004

Violent serial killer and transsexual Paul Denyer will be barred from changing his name to Paula under a crackdown on prison security.

All Victorian prisoners will be banned from changing their names for frivolous or improper reasons under tough new laws introduced into Parliament yesterday.

The move comes after Denyer, 32, began moves to change his name by deed poll and be treated as a woman in prison.

Corrections Minister Andre Haermeyer has told Parliament the prisoner had perpetrated heinous crimes on innocent women and was now causing pain to their families with offensive behaviour.

“We will not stand by while a prisoner attempts to flout the law to gain notoriety and, at the same time, cause great offence to victims of crime,” Mr Haermeyer said.

He said yesterday prisoners changing names could create security issues if they were trying to avoid detection or escape monitoring by police after release from prison.

Inmates will only be allowed to change names for legitimate reasons.

These could include prisoners who were assisting police and needed to go into witness protection, female prisoners who were getting divorced or prisoners with numerous aliases listed on the police database.

The Secretary of the Department of Justice will have the right to veto any application for a name change if it is deemed unnecessary or would cause offence to victims.

The legislation will also enable prison authorities to stop or censor prisoners’ mail before it is sent.

The move came after Denyer recently tracked down his estranged brother in the United Kingdom, 12 years after threatening to kill his wife and children.

Denyer, 32, murdered three women in a seven-week frenzy in bayside suburbs in 1993.

His victims were Elizabeth Stevens, 18, Debbie Fream, who was 22 and the mother of a 12-day-old baby, and Natalie Russell, 17.

In June, Denyer caused public outrage when it was revealed he had been assessed in jail on whether he could have a taxpayer-funded sex change.

He was later barred from gender reassignment surgery and in July lost a legal battle to be allowed to wear makeup.

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