A kid caught a few years back on CCTV trying to break into an old PitchnPutt venue may crack the cold case here. HIS DNA also belongs to the unidentified DNA of the man that murdered (or was present) in 1999 when Irma Palasics was bashed to death in the killers search for money and jewelery in the home…SOMEONE can help, and knows who it is! This new DNA technique could soon be solving Crimes decades old on a regular basis through the children of criminals
Make sure to watch the 60 minutes story which run last night. (2 parts down the page)
Simply put this persons father was involved. The first of the young group of fools who tried to break into PitchnPutt may be able to make 500,000 by identifying the person in the video leading to an arrest and conviction!
A murder mystery like no other – two apparently unrelated crimes, 11 years apart. One is a relatively harmless teenage prank. The other a cowardly murder of a Canberra grandmother. 72 year old Irma Palacsics was bashed and murdered in her own home in 1999. Fifteen years on, the killers probably thought they’d got away with it, but a recent break-in at a local “pitch and putt”, has this cold case warming up. Extraordinary new forensic science has linked the two crimes and, now, a son is about to betray his killer father.
New DNA technology has linked the cold-case murder of a 72-year-old woman in 1999 to a golf course burglary more than 10 years later, ACT Policing say.
Irma Palasics and her husband Gregor were bound, gagged and viciously bashed when two men broke in and ransacked their home on Grover Crescent in McKellar on November 6, 1999.
After the offenders left, Mr Palasics was able to free himself and phone police, but Mrs Palasics died from her injuries.
Mr Palasics, severely injured, traumatised and grief-stricken, died within a year.
Years later, sensitive new technology used to examine DNA evidence from the scene linked Mrs Palasics’ death to what would seem like an unconnected incident in 2010, when four teenagers broke into the Woden Pitch and Putt.
Police have revealed the DNA evidence suggested a child-parent link, between a perpetrator of the Pitch and Putt break-in and what happened at the Palasics’ home.
Senior Constable Jarryd Dunbar told Channel Nine the tests suggested the son of one of Mrs Palasics’ attackers was involved in the Pitch and Putt break-in, although there was a small possibility it could have been someone from his extended family.
He said the son was believed to have been at an 18th birthday party at the Slovenian-Australian Association across the road from the Pitch and Putt earlier that evening.
“Whoever was at that party will be able to identify who those persons are in the CCTV,” he said.
Call to Crime Stoppers ended before information was given
Police said that on October 20 this year, a man contacted Crime Stoppers and indicated he could identify people in the CCTV footage but ended the call before providing any information.
“This is a horrific crime which happened in the sanctity of someone’s own home,” Senior Constable Dunbar said.
“Come forward and give us the information we need, so the family can put this crime behind them.
“[Gregor] went to his death a few years later always with the thought in his mind that he had failed in some way as a husband and as a protector.”
Police said they were not concerned about the act of vandalism at the Pitch and Putt, and this would not be a problem for anyone considering giving information.
“We don’t want your name, we just want the information you have that could lead to any convictions,” Crime Stoppers CEO Bryan Roach said.
Police said DNA from the murder scene was also placed on Interpol database with no match.
Facefit of suspect released
Prior to her death, Irma and her husband were robbed in 1997 and again in 1998 at their old home in Pelsart Street in Red Hill.
On June 29, 1997, an excess of $100,000 in cash, numerous items of expensive jewellery and a number of Australian $200 gold coins were taken.
About a year later on October 10, 1998, two men were disturbed by Mrs Palasics in the process of a another burglary.
Mrs Palasics was assaulted and during a struggle she managed to pull the balaclava from the head of one offender before both men escaped.
Police said new DNA technology had also helped them link the man wearing the balaclava to the eventual murder scene in McKellar.
DNA taken from a number of tape lifts from the balaclava matched DNA profiles from the the Palasics’ home after the murder.
Officers said it was the first time a link had been established between the two crime scenes.
Police were told by a witness to the aggravated robbery that a man got into a 1980s model silver or blue-coloured sedan with a possibly faulty headlines and ACT rego plates on Quiros Street in Red Hill.
Officers believe this man was one of the offenders.
The witness also told police he saw a second witness walking his dog in the area, who looked about 45 to 50 years old, around 186cm tall, with a solid build, short black, curly hair and a black beard.
The man was wearing black rimmed glasses, a dark long-sleeved shirt and long pants, and was walking a tan labrador or retriever dog.
Police said they suspected all three incidents were linked and have released a computer-generated image of a suspect from the 1998 burglary.
They have also released an image of the potential witness who was walking his dog.
Witnesses urged to come forward
There is a $500,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of Mrs Palasics’ killers and police have urged people with information to come forward to help solve the crime.
Mrs Palasics’ daughter Elizabeth Mikita said the family were unable to move on without knowing her killed their mother.
“She was a lovely, caring person, much loved by her family and friends and we think about her every day,” she said.
“Her death has been devastating and while we continue to recover 15 years on, we need to know who killed her and why.
“Without answers to these questions we cannot move forward, we cannot rest and we cannot overcome our grief.”
Ms Mikita said the people who killed her mother not only took her life, but also her father’s.
“He was never the same after her death. He died believing that he had failed to protect his wife. It wasn’t his fault and he didn’t deserve to live out the final years of his life blaming himself,” she said.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, or via the website. Information can be provided anonymously.
A special phone-in to try to uncover more information about the case has been organised for Thursday – the 15th anniversary of Mrs Palasics’ death.
Irma Palasics – $500 000 reward
About 9.30pm on Saturday 6 November 1999 two men forced their way into the McKellar home of elderly couple, Gregor and Irma Palasics.
The couple were bound and savagely beaten before the men ransacked their home and stole cash and jewellery. Irma did not survive her injuries and died at the scene.
Gregor and Irma were victims of a burglary in 1997 and an aggravated burglary in 1998 when they lived in Red Hill.
During the burglary in 1997 unknown offender(s) stole a large sum of cash and jewellery.
Police suspect that a possible link exists between the burglaries in 1997 and 1998 and the home invasion (aggravated burglary) on 6 November which resulted in the murder of Irma Palasics.
60 Minutes Exclusive
or part one a part 2 here http://www.jump-in.com.au/show/60minutes/stories/2014/october/who-killed-irma/
Pitch and Putt CCTV
Public appeal video
In August 2012 police released CCTV footage of an attempted aggravated burglary at Pitch & Putt in Phillip which took place 1.50am, Sunday 16 May 2010. Five teenagers appear in the CCTV footage, showing them break into the Pitch & Putt golf course by charging at the metal roller door of the storage area.
Police believe forensic evidence links the Pitch & Putt attempted burglary with the crime scene in November 1999 which resulted in the murder of Irma Palasics.
Police are urging anyone with any information, no matter how small, to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Information can be provided anonymously.
A $500 000 reward is in place for information leading to the apprehension and subsequent conviction of the person(s) responsible for Irma’s murder and an appropriate indemnity from prosecution will be considered for any accomplice who first gives information.
Media releases for Irma
- Who killed Irma? ‘60 Minutes’ program reveals major developments 3 November 2014
- Police renew appeal for assistance on the anniversary of murder – 6 November 2012
- Reward increases to $500 000 as police hunt Irma Palasics’ killer – 7 September 2012
- Police uncover fresh link to 12-year-old homicide – 29 August 2012
- Palasics muder: case still open – 5 November 2001
- Murder investigation (PDF) – 8 November 1999
- Murder investigation (PDF) – 7 November 1999