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Murder in the Land of Oz

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Best Episodes of Murder in the Land of Oz

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The Gatton Murders
Some towns become synonymous with the crimes that happen in them - Salem. Waco. Snowtown.In Queensland, we have Gatton. When the bodies of Michael, Ellen, and Norah Murphy were discovered in a field the day after Boxing Day, 1898, the little agricultural town would become forever linked to one of the most famous unsolved crimes in Australian history.For years the murders were considered by police to be a crime of opportunity - the act of a desperate man from out of town, wanting to rob the well-off siblings. Or perhaps some madman, killing for a thrill. But was the crime actually perpetrated by a member of the Murphy family? Or worse, was it committed by a conspiracy of townspeople, determined to get revenge upon the alleged seducer Michael Murphy?This week your hosts saddle up the horses and set out west to investigate this murder most foul. On this treacherous journey, we encounter suspicious swagmen, incompetent police work, the horrors of a 19th-century autopsy, and some good old-fashioned Catholic and Protestant religious tension.In 1898, in Gatton, west of Brisbane, the bodies of Michael, Ellen, and Norah Murphy, along with their horse, were discovered lying in a field. Michael had been shot through the head, while Ellen and Norah had been raped and bludgeoned to death. Suspects ranged from their brother in law William McNeil, to the butcher’s man Thomas Day, to a number of swagmen who were waltzing in and out of town.Due to the unfortunate state of telecommunications infrastructure in the late 19th century, no police officers from the CIB were sent out to investigate the crime until two days after the bodies were found. The chief inspector never even saw the bodies of the victims. And the investigation became hyperfocused on one particular suspect, who had an alibi for the time of the murder, leaving any number of potential suspects uninvestigated.The Gatton murders have captured the imaginations of Australians for the past hundred years. No one has ever been found guilty of the murders, although armchair sleuths in modern times come up with different suspects and different explanations for the crime every couple of years. In this episode, we consider each of the main suspects, as well as a new theory put forward by Stephanie Bennet in her book The Gatton Murders: A True Story of Lust, Revenge and Vile Retribution.Who do you think killed the Murphys? If you've got a theory or know of a suspect we didn’t mention, get in contact with us via our email, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter!Our main source this week was the aforementioned The Gatton Murders: A True Story of Lust, Revenge and Vile Retribution, which can be purchased here can get all up in some great information and also revel in some peak Internet 1.0 web design at you want to delve deep into the Oxley-Gatton connection, you can read Neil Bradford’s book The Oxley-Gatton Murders: Exposing the Conspiracy which is out of print but can be found in a few libraries around Brisbane.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Backpacker Murders Part One
Seven backpackers disappeared hitchhiking off the Hume Highway in New South Wales from 1989 to 1992. For years, Australia was gripped by the mystery – was it the work of a serial killer, or just some more inexperienced tourists bested by the Australian outback?In the first episode of Season Two and our first case in New South Wales, your girls discuss the initial disappearances of the seven backpackers, Jess's fear of the outdoors, and how much Sydney sucks. Fuck you, Sydney.James Gibson, Deborah Everist, Joanne Walters, Caroline Clarke, Simone Schmidl, Gabor Neugebauer and Anja Habschied were the seven victims of the Backpacker Murderer. They were picked up by a mystery bloke, driven into the Belangalo State Forest, and viciously murdered. The police were baffled – what kind of a person would murder seven people so horrifically for their own sick pleasure?The Backpacker Murders are without a doubt the most famous serial killing case in Australian history. Even if you’ve never heard the true story, you’ve heard the fictional one – this case inspired the Wolf Creek movies. But, as cliché as it is to say, in this case, truth is definitely stranger than fiction.Our main source this week was the absolutely ripper Sins of the Brother, by Les Kennedy and Mark Whittaker. You can buy it for the very reasonable price of $22 here on, or you can try before you buy and read an excerpt here us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Lesbian Vampire Killers
Tracey Wigginton was convicted of murdering Edward Baldock and trying to drink his blood. Tracey wasn’t just a regular old murderer, you see. She was a vampire, a night stalker, one of the Devil’s children, who needed to feed on the sweet nectar of life to sustain herself.At least, that’s what her vampire coven believed. And they believed in her enough to help her take another human life.On this episode of Murder in the Land of Oz, your girls talk about mind control, why men don’t think women can murder, and of course, our shameful teenage vampire phases. We renounce Twilight, but Buffy is still cool.On October 20, 1989, Edward Baldock was violently murdered. It was a tragedy, but the media had an absolute field day when it was discovered that his killers were a coven of wannabe vampire lesbians. Readers couldn’t get enough of the Lesbian Vampire Killers, and the story made international news. Some people were titillated, others were terrified. Were cults of lesbian vampires coming for you?Tracey Wigginton and three others were arrested for the murder. Tracey’s three accomplices quickly turned on her, saying they were compelled by Tracey to commit the crime. While Tracey got life imprisonment with a minimum of 13 years, her accomplices got barely more than a slap on the wrists. So were these women really compelled by Tracey to help her murder an innocent man? Or did the accomplices take advantage of the burgeoning Satanic Panic to make Tracey take the fall?Our main source this week was Great Crimes and Trials: Lesbian Vampires Killers, which you can partake of here more information, you can check out these news articles​​​​​​​ you want to find out more, pro tip: turn on Safe Search before searching “Lesbian Vampire Killer”.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Murder of Betty Shanks
Betty Shanks was twenty-two years old and walking home from work when she was attacked, beaten and left for dead. Could be the first line of any article in the Courier Mail today, unfortunately, but this attack happened in 1952, and her killer was never found.This week your girls talk exhaustively about Jess’s childhood, just how dirty motorbikes are, and just how unbelievably shitty it is to be a woman sometimes, regardless of what decade we’re in.In 1952, a young woman named Betty Shanks was walking home from work when she was attacked, beaten, and left to die on the side of the road.I have now told you literally everything there is to know about this case.There are no suspects, really, despite the fact that every couple of years someone pops out of the woodwork claiming they know who did it.There isn’t much information to be found out there about this case, due to the age and the unsolved nature of the crime. No one was ever brought to trial or even charged with ending the life of Betty.Our main source this week was I Know Who Killed Betty Shanks, by Ted Duhs, which can be found here, although fair warning, there’s some graphic imagery and also, we didn’t love it as a read.If you want to read another book about the case, you can’t cause it’s out of print, but the title to search the library for is Who Killed Betty Shanks? By Ken BlanchFor some lighter reading, we have the following news articles ya primary sources, if you’re doing a school essay us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Mayne Family
Anyone who has roots in Brissie could probably ask ten different people what they know about the Mayne family and they’d get ten different answers. They’ve been called the Mad Maynes and the Murderous Maynes – but are they really as black as they’re painted? Does the family who helped establish most of Brisbane have literal skeletons in their closet?This week your girls jump into the time machine for one last whirl as they try to tackle a question that has haunted Brisbane for over a hundred years – was Patrick Mayne really a murderer? Or was he just a weird rich guy?Patrick Mayne was a rich businessman and city alderman in Brisbane in the mid nineteenth century. On his deathbed, he allegedly confessed to murdering a man named Robert Cox twenty years prior, stealing a sum of £300 and using the money to purchase a butcher’s shop on Queen Street. From this shop, Mayne amassed a great fortune, high status in society, and a reputation that has followed him throughout the centuries. Did Patrick Mayne really kill Robert Cox? Or was it a game of Chinese whispers, a bit of good old-fashioned Aussie tall poppy syndrome? This week we’re talking about a murder, but we are also talking about how rumours get started, and how they can have an impact hundreds of years later.Our mayne source (see what we did there) this week was The Mayne Inheritance by Rosamund Siemon, available here other sources this week include this fantastic article which debunked a fair amount of what Siemon wrote in The Mayne Inheritance, available here you wanna learn more about Mayne the man, go here another interesting debunking of some Mayne myths and legends, this two-parter on Haunts of Brisbane is a cracker us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Pacemaker Murderer
Tassie has a reputation of being an inbred backwater twenty years behind the rest of Australia, and to a certain extent that’s true (less so with regards to the inbreeding perhaps). But sometimes, Tassie is ahead of the times.That was the case when the murder of David Crawford caused a breakthrough in forensics. Murdered brutally with an axe in his own home, police quickly zeroed in on a suspect – friend and neighbour, Ivan Jones. The police needed a way to destroy Jones’ alibi, and they found it in Crawford’s pacemaker, which had recorded the time of his death. This was the first time information was retrieved from a pacemaker in order to solve a murder. See, cool things do happen in Tasmania! It’s not all incest and dairy farms! EPISODE NOTES: 72 year old David William Crawford was bludgeoned to death with an axe in his home by Ivan Jones, who was then aged 19. Jones had allegedly committed the crime because he was in need of cash, and he’d heard that Crawford had a bit stashed away on his property. Jones lured Crawford outside and struck him six times with an axe. He left the house with only $80 in cash. A few hours later, he rang police, pretending that he’d just happened across the body. The police were suspicious of Ivan straight away, but his story kept changing and they needed a smoking gun to prove he was lying about his involvement in the crime. So they looked towards a unique forensic measure – examining Crawford’s pacemaker. It would record the time that the heart stopped – but they only had a brief window to retrieve the data before it was erased forever. Jones was sentenced to 20 years imprisonment for the murder of Crawford, but to the shock and horror of his loved ones, and Tasmania as a whole, Jones was paroled after only serving half his sentence. Our main source this week was is the greatest true crime television show of all time, no contest, Forensic Files, season 11 episode 36, Ticker Tape. Fuck me, how damn good is Forensic Files. It’s available on Netflix or on Youtube if you’re feeling dangerous. Information about Jones’ paroling can be found here of the ABC Program Catalyst that covered the case can be found here info can be found here you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
Ned Kelly Part One
Ned Kelly: outback legend, or cowardly criminal? You decide!In this kind-of-a-bonus-but-not-really episode, we tackle an Aussie icon, none other than Edward Kelly, better known as Ned, and his gang of rambunctious friends. Some people (Ellen) believe that Ned was a hero, a legend, and a man of the people. Sure he stole a few horses and killed a few cops, but what else are you gonna do in the outback in the late 1800s? Some others (Jess) believe that Ned Kelly was a bad man, actually, and we shouldn’t really worship a guy who stole horses, robbed banks, captured hostages, tried to blow up a train, and yeah, okay, murdered a few people.Whichever side of the Kelly Divide you’re on, there’s no arguing that Ned Kelly is one of the most interesting and infamous people in Australian history. In Part One we’re gonna get a little high school English and discuss the socio-historic context of the Kelly gang before diving right in to Ned and co’s many and varied exploits.Ned Kelly and his gang lightly terrorised the north east of Victoria for many years, stealing and selling horses, thumbing their noses at the la and the upper-class ‘squattocracy’ they believed were oppressing the poor working class. The Kelly gang were legends – bushrangers, outlaws, the Australian answer to Robin Hood.But ol’ Ned and his pals were also murderers. Ned was a legend in his own corner of the globe, but it wasn’t until the gang bailed up and shot a group of policeman that were out searching for Ned that they became outlawed. The highest bounty in Australian history were placed on their heads, and Ned was determined to get revenge on – in his opinion – the corrupt Victorian police.From this act, their legend would grow, from the north east of Victoria in the late 19th century, to the absolute phenomena that the Kellys continue to be in 21st century Australia. That little corner of Victoria where Ned and pals kicked around will forever be known as Kelly Country. Ned Kelly has come to exemplify so much of what some believe it means to be Australian. But debates continue to this day: was Ned Kelly truly an outback legend, or was he just a horse thief turned murderer that deserved to answer for the crimes he committed?We won’t be able to answer that question in this ep, but we will cover the first half of Ned’s brilliant career, spanning up to the murders at Stringbark Creek. You’ll have to wait for Part 2 to hear the rest.Our main source this week was Peter Fitzsimmons’ Ned Kelly, which is a great book not only because of the wealth of information in provides but also because, at a whopping 826 pages, you can use it as a door stop or perhaps a brick once you’ve finished reading it. Cop it here read a biography of Ned’s short but busy life, go here very interactive and fun website about Ol Ned can be found here you’re not a fan of Ned Kelly you can have your worldview supported by reading this salty Herald Sun article we start a book club? Get in contact with us on the socials! We promise the books we chose will be less than 800 pages.If you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Port Arthur Massacre
For our second Tassie episode, we cover one of the worst mass shooting in Australian history.The shooter was Martin Bryant, a 25 year old man with the IQ of an eleven-year-old. Having the mind of a child didn’t stop him from getting his hands on a bunch of semi-automatic weaponry and murdering 35 people and wounding 23 more at Port Arthur Historic Site on April 28, 1996, though.The massacre lead to a massive overhaul of Australia’s gun control laws. The ability to purchase firearms were severely restricted, and the government initiated a buyback scheme that saw over 600,000 guns taken off the streets. See guys? Gun control is possible! You can do it too!EPISODE NOTES:Quite often, the Port Arthur massacre is used either as a reason for Australians to pat ourselves on the backs and say well done for gun control, or as an example of just where government intervention in Australia went mad.Wherever you lie on the debate, it’s important to remember that the massacre isn’t just a political beach ball. Whatever certain whackadoo politicians might think, the Port Arthur massacre was a very real, very tragic chapter in Australian history, and the victims and survivors deserved to be remembered with respect.The Murder with Friends episode on Port Arthur can be found here read the full timeline of events as presented to police in trial, head to Wikipedia read about how Australian gun laws changed after Port Arthur, head here you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Sharpe Family Murders
On March 23, 2004, John Sharpe shot a spear into his wife Anna’s head while she was sleeping. On March 27, he did the same to his nineteen month old daughter Gracie. He then concocted an elaborate ruse, pretending that Anna was still alive, and that she had left John for another man. Anna’s family and friends were immediately suspicious. They didn’t believe that a dedicated, loving mother like Anna would up and leave her husband and child for a flight of fancy. When the truth surrounding Anna and Gracie’s disappearances came out, John Sharpe became known as the Mornington Monster, and Australia was left to grapple with why a man would commit such a heinous crime against the people he was meant to protect.Much has been written about the Mornington Monster but there is comparatively little about his wife and daughter, the women he took out of this world, Anna and Gracie. In this episode we discuss John Sharpe and his crimes, but we also try and shed light on Anna Kemp’s life and personality. She was a vibrant, strong, loving person, and her daughter Gracie was the light of her life. John Sharpe is a monster for what he did, but he is also a person – a weak, inept person who was unable and unwilling to confront the problems in his life and marriage, and so took what he thought was the only way out. He tried to deceive Anna’s family, the police, and the general public, but in the end, his personality was his own undoing. When he made an appeal to the public for information about Anna’s disappearance, nobody in Australia believed his crocodile tears.The victims of crimes extend far beyond those who are murdered. Anna’s family and friends will forever live with the pain of having Anna and Gracie taken away from them. This episode, like all our episodes, is dedicated to the family of the victims.Our main source this week was the judge’s sentencing, which can be read here excerpt of Why Did They Do It? can be read here few choice news articles from the time – here and here article regarding the sexual abuse claims against John can be found at the Herald Sun if you have a subscription or archived in a very early 2000s website here can find the episode of Crime Investigation Australia online but not, like, legally, so we’re not going to link it. Likewise the documentary Crocodile Tears is available on YouTube but it’s bad form for a podcast about crime and justice to link to copyright violations so you can just search it.If you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
Eddie Leonski
In Melbourne, Victoria during the Second World War, electric lights were turned off or lowered at night to prevent aerial attacks from the Japanese. The war, which had confined itself to the Northern Hemisphere for the most part, was slowly creeping down the Pacific, and Melbourne was enjoying the subsequent influx of thousands of American soldiers stationed nearby. Many a young Aussie lady was swept off her feet by the charming, cashed-up Yankees.But the fascination turned to fear when the lights went out and the bodies of three women were found strangled and discarded on the streets of Melbourne. Now the people of Melbourne had more than just air raids to fear – and all the evidence was pointing towards a GI being responsible for the crimes. The unknown subject was bequeathed a catchy nickname – the Brownout Strangler – to remind young women in Melbourne to stay inside when the lights turned down.Eddie Leonski was a troubled youth who was conscripted into the military at a young age. The crimes he committed against young women in Melbourne were horrific, and at a time when Australians feared more for the safety of their country than ever before, the Brownout Strangler was reminding them that danger could come from within, as well. A thorough investigation weeded out Leonski from hundreds of American soldiers that could have been the culprit.But it was the legal issues that really cemented Leonski as part of Australian criminal history. He was tried under American military law on Australian soil, and was executed at Pentridge Prison in Victoria with very little input from the state or Federal governments.Ivy McLeod, Pauline Thompson and Gladys Hosking were undeserving victims of a cruel and twisted mind. Eddie Leonski is remembered now, not for being a war hero or a dedicated soldier, but for his sick and despicable acts. His body has been dug up and re-interred a number of times, undeserving of a final resting place.Our main source this week was the cracking Murder at Dusk by Ian W. Shaw. Get it here to be seduced by his poetic descriptions of violent hangings.To find out more about the legal complications of the case, read here can find out some general info at the light and breezy Daily Mail here what your English teacher would call “historical context”, head here you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on murderinthelandofoz@gmail.comwww.thatsnotcanonproductions.comIf you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Killer Cannibal of Van Diemen's Land
Warning: this episode contains brief mention of sexual assault, and not at all brief mentions of cannibalism.All of Australia has some pretty messed up history from the convict days, but that shit reaaally got concentrated in Tassie. The convicts of Van Diemen’s Land, as it was known back in the day, were some of the weirdest, most brutal, and most messed up lads around. Alexander Pearce was perhaps the best example of this. A career criminal, alcoholic, occasional bushranger, and semi-constant prison escapee, his great claim to fame was escaping from the inescapable Sarah Island Penal Colony.Pearce and seven of his mates fled into the wild, wild wilderness of Tasmania’s west. As they trekked through the harsh wilderness towards freedom, when the food ran out, there was only way to starve off starvation…Apparently the tastiest part of a human being is the upper arm, if you were curious.EPISODE NOTES:Alexander Pearce has gained a rep of being a big bad cannibal man, but the truth was, he was kind of like more like the Steven Bradbury of cannibals. As a mildly talented bushman, he didn’t really have the skills to survive in the wild on his own. The only reason he outlived the other escapees was blind luck, really.You wouldn’t know that from all the books and movies made about him, though. People are very eager to paint him as a sadistic monster. Which yes. For sure he was. He was fully a murderous cannibal. But he was also definitely an idiot, and not a cold, calculated mastermind like he’s been painted.Jeez, you eat seven or so guys and suddenly everyone acts like you’re Hannibal Lecter.Our main source this week was Hell’s Gates: The Terrible Journey of Alexander Pearce, Van Diemen’s Land Cannibal by Paul Collins. It’s baller and there is a lot more historical information than we could fit in this episode, so go forth.There’s also been about ten movies about the bloke, all hovering around the five star mark on IMDB, if that’s your bag.An article containing Pearce’s death sketch can be found here information can be found here, where his crime is charmingly recorded as ‘theft of boots’ you like your information served with approximately eighty thousand ads, head here for the Irish perspective you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
BONUS Murdered Musicians
What started out as a simple guest segment on Musicals Taught Me Everything I Know somehow ballooned out to this glorious 40 minutes of discussion about musical murders.If you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Murder of Anita Cobby
Take a drink every time we tell a story about a young women murdered while walking home. And then keep drinking to help dull the pain.This week we cover the murder of beauty pageant queen, nurse, and all-around angel Anita Cobby, who’s life was tragically cut short by a gang of absolute sickos who pulled her into a car when she was walking home one evening. This episode is low on banter and high on absolute tragedy, so if you’re in a rough mood… maybe save this one for later.On Feburary 4th, 1986, the body of former beauty queen Anita Cobby was found lying in a paddock in western Sydney. She had been savagely beaten, raped and murdered. The alarm was raised and in one of the most effective investigations in New South Wales police history, her killers were found within a few short weeks.The people of Australia were outraged to hear about the level of violence inflicted on Anita, and were disgusted by the cavalier attitudes shown by the men who committed the crime, even though four out of the five perpetrators tried to put the blame onto one man, John Travers, who was a uniquely sick individual with a history of violent crime. The parents of Anita Cobby founded the Australian Homicide Victims Support Group, which you can visit here main source this week was the lush Anita Cobby: The Crime that Shocked The Nation by Alan J. Whitaker which you can read about here you’d like to hear the content of this podcast presented by a real professional who knows what he’s on about, you can listen to the beloved Casey Casefile’s episode on Anita Cobby here you prefer to read casefiles rather than listen to Casefile, you can find the original material here just to keep our sources diverse, you can watch a doco for free on YouTube here us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Other Doctor Death
What do you call a doctor that graduates at the bottom of his class? A doctor.What do you call a doctor that graduates at the bottom of his class, gets sanctioned for professional misconduct, gets their license revoked, manages to get a job as Director of Surgery at a large regional hospital, and causes the deaths of thirteen odd patients? Doctor Death.Doctor Jayant Patel worked at the Bundaberg Base Hospital in Queensland, Australia, from 2003 to 2005. In that two year span, the hospital received complaint after complaint about his unprofessional manner, his dangerous lack of hygiene – oh yeah, and his tendency to remove the wrong organ from patients. The unprecedented number of patients that died under Doctor Patel’s care led the media to label him Doctor Death – but unlike his American counterpart, Doctor Patel was not a cold blooded killer.He was just really, really shitty at his job.He was eventually tried for the death of three patients and the grievous bodily harm of another, but Doctor Patel’s reign of terror was allowed to rage on for far too long – possibly due to the fact that, due to his speed in conducting these surgeries, Bundaberg Base Hospital was receiving financial incentives from Queensland Health.Our main source this week was the official inquiry into Doctor Patel and the Bundaberg Base Hospital, known as the Davies Inquiry. If you’re a fan of reading government documents, this one’s a real killer. High Court decision can be read here overview of Doctor Patel’s record in New York and at Kaiser Permanente can be read here fancy? Even the New York Times wrote about Patel. us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
Ghosts in the Land of Oz, Halloween 2018
For this Very Special Episode of Murder in the Land of Oz, the girls take you on an auditory tour of some of Australia’s most haunted locations. From the isolated cells of the Separate Prison in Tasmania’s Port Arthur to a row of poinciana trees in Darwin where a wraith waits to devour the guts of men (mood), we’re going around this great southern land to hear the spookiest tales of those who remain on Earth after death.We talk about death a lot on this show, but for some, death is just a footnote in the story of their time on Earth. Australia is full of places where humans have suffered terribly at the hands of their fellow man, and their impression can be felt. Whether it’s supernatural in nature or just human empathy depends on what you believe.PODCASTER’S NOTE – Hi guys, Ellen here. As mentioned in the episode, I emailed renowned paranormal investigator and historian Allen Tiller to fact check a few spurious claims that were presented in some blogs I read and that I repeated in the episode, and to my unbelievable surprise he responded – but not until after we recorded the episode.There is no record of any large-scale mining accident in Kapunda, and the body racks are a zesty but untrue tale put forward by a blogger eager for clicks. I would also like to clear the name of Dr Matthew Blood, who I can confirm never experimented on his patients, but Allen informed me he has indeed been sighted at the Kapunda Hotel on at least one occasion.Due to the incredibly large but incredibly low quality number of sources used for this episode, I’m just going to link one fairly non-spurious article per location. Further research is encouraged. I would like to also note that we drastically lowered our journalistic standards for this episode. Where you usually find books and case files, be warned: here be blogs.QUEENSLAND: Boggo Road Gaol SOUTH WALES: Monte Cristo Homestead Beechworth Asylum Port Arthur AUSTRALIA: North Kapunda Hotel AUSTRALIA: The Shipwreck of the Alkimos TERRITORY: The Poinciana Woman us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Wanda Beach Murders
The Wanda Beach Murders are possibly Australia’s most well-known cold case. The 1965 murder of Marianne Schmidt and Christine Sharrock devastated the nation, and to this day police are still trying to piece together the circumstances of their deaths. In this episode, your girls discuss one of the most likely suspects, a serial killer who travelled across the US, luring girls to their deaths by posing as a photographer. In 1965 though, he was just another Aussie teenager… one who happened to match the description of the only other person seen at the beach when Marianne and Christine were murdered.On the 11 of January 1965, two fifteen year old girls, Marianne Schmidt and Christine Sharrock, went down to spend the day at Wanda Beach in Sydney, and were never seen alive again. Their bodies were found lying on a deserted section of beach, brutally stabbed. The perpetrator has never been caught, and it remains New South Wales' oldest unsolved homicide case.As one of Australia’s most notorious cold cases, many potential suspects have been put forth, both by the police and by armchair detectives. One possible candidate is the Beauty Queen Killer, Christopher Wilder, who killed eight women in a six week long crime spree across the United States.It’s possible we’ll never know who killed Marianne and Christine. But the people of Australia will not let these two girls be forgotten.To read more about Christopher Wilder and his connection to Wanda Beach, go here some surprisingly good crime journalism considering it's from Mama Mia, go here the episode of Sunday Night here to the dulcet tones of Casey Casefile discussing Wanda Beach here us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Murder of Allison Baden-Clay Part One
On April 20, 2012, Gerard Baden-Clay phoned the police. His wife hadn’t come home from her morning walk, you see, and it wasn’t like her to be late. She had a big day ahead, and he didn’t want to cause a fuss, but he was getting worried. When the police arrived at the Baden-Clay household in Brookfield in Brisbane’s west, Gerard greeted the officers, gesturing apologetically at his face. “Cut myself shaving,” he said. He needn’t have pointed it out. Officers immediately noticed the long, ragged scratches on the side of Gerard’s face.And they knew they weren’t from shaving.The investigation into Allison’s disappearance would become one of the largest in Brisbane’s history, in man hours and in media coverage. The people demanded to know what happened to Allison, a much-loved mother, friend, and member of the community. People who had never met her joined a crowd of hundreds at the Brookfield Showgrounds to volunteer their time to search for Allison. Her husband Gerard was not amongst them.When Allison’s body was found, days later, dumped in a creek under a bridge, miles from her home, there was one person the police and the public were sure was responsible.Sources:The bulk of the information for this episode was taken from David Murray’s outstandingly excellent book, The Murder of Allison Baden-Clay, a fantastic addition to anyone’s true crime library.The Courier-Mail archives have a huge range of articles written by David Murray and other journalists which can be accessed here if you have a Courier-Mail subscription.Allison’s autopsy report can be found at judge’s summary for the jury at Gerard’s trial can be found here us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Fisherman
Please note, this episode discusses crimes against children.Was a man convicted of the murder of a nine year old boy in Tasmania in 1975 responsible for some of Australia’s most well known unsolved crimes?Investigation by retired detective Gordon Davie uncovered that wherever James O’Neill went, children seemed to go missing. After years of investigation and interviews with O’Neill, Davie uncovered evidence linking O’Neill with crimes not only in Tasmania, but in Victoria, Western Australia, and South Australia – including the abduction of the Beaumont children and the Adelaide Oval abductions, as well as the murders of two Indigenous boys in the remote Kimberly region of WA.Is it possible that a serial killer got away with an unknown number of child murders for nearly ten years before being convicted? Or is it just a coincidence that O’Neill was in town when these kids went missing?EPISODE NOTES:Ricky Smith and Bruce Wilson were murdered in Tasmania in 1975 by a man by the name of James Ryan O’Neill. He was convicted for Ricky’s murder, and spent a fair chunk of his sentence in Hayes Prison Farm, where he was allowed to look after animals, do farm work, and occasionally go fishing completely unsupervised outside of the prison walls.A child murderer being allowed to go on a jaunty little fishing trip would probably grab anyone’s attention, but that wasn’t what fascinated retired detective Gordon Davie when he read an article about O’Neill in the newspaper. It was the fact that he had claimed to have a completely clean criminal record before murdering two boys in the mid 70s.By now it was 1998, and Davie had long since retired. But something about O’Neill didn’t sit right to him. He wrote to O’Neill, to ask to interview him, and what followed was four years of a kind of friendship, where Davie would record hundreds of hours of conversation between the two, where they would discuss fishing, their lives, and of course, the possibility that O’Neill was responsible for dozens of other child murders across Australia.This week, our main source was the absolutely stellar documentary The Fisherman, available on Youtube. This documentary includes interviews with James O’Neill, and also, Gordon Davie has the most ocker accent known to man, so it is definitely worth a watch.Have a squiz at the inquest into Jimmy Taylor’s death and see if you think the evidence stacks up against O’Neill about Jimmy Taylor, whose body has never been found, can be located here’s always good. you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Truro Murders
South Australia, we’ve been waiting to get inside you for a long, long time.To start our journey around Australia's most messed-up state, we have the Truro murders, the name given to the truly traumatic series of serial murders committed by Christopher Worrell and James Miller.From 1978 to 1979, a series of human remains were located in remote bushland near the town of Truro, eighty kilometres away from Adelaide, South Australia. As more bodies turned up, police became convinced they’d found the dumping grounds of a serial killer.Eventually, they put two and two together and connected the bodies to a series of seemingly unrelated (and apparently mostly uninvestigated) disappearances of women from around Adelaide, who had all vanished over a period of just over fifty days.The women had been picked up by Worrell and Miler, and restrained, assaulted, strangled, and then dumped in the bush.Fair warning, this ep discusses sexual assault, and also gets a little gross.EPISODE NOTES:The disappearances of seven women over a period of 52 days from around Adelaide was not taken as seriously as it warranted. It was the seventies, they were all young women, and apparently young people were prone to up and leaving their friends and families for periods of time and never communicating with them ever again.The families of the missing women were certain that they would never run away, but police assured them that there was likely nothing to worry about.Over a year passed from when the last girl went missing to when a body was found by mushroom hunters in the bushland near the town of Truro. Veronica Knight had gone missing around Christmas of 1976 and was not found until 1978. The absence of any clear cause of death led police to believe that Veronica had simply gone missing in the bush and died of natural causes. When a second body was found in the bush almost exactly a year later, the police changed their tune.As more bodies were uncovered, police began linking the deaths to a total of seven young women who had disappeared from Adelaide between December 1976 and February 1977. And a tip led police to their likely killers: Christopher Worrell and James Miller, two men who had met in prison and formed a dominant and submissive sexual relationship on the outside. Worrell allowed Miller to perform sex acts on him, but he preferred women, and eventually he and Miller would cruise around Adelaide, looking for women for Worrell to assault.Worrell would be killed in a car accident in 1977, which ended the killing spree, but Miller stood trial, and claimed that he never harmed any of the women, and only went with Worrell because he was coerced. But nobody bought that nonsense, and he was sentenced to six life sentences for the murders.The victims of Christopher Worrell and James Miller are:Veronica Knight, aged 18, disappeared on the 23rd of December 1976Tania Kenny, aged 15, disappeared on 2 January 1977Juliet Mykyata, aged 16, disappeared on 21 January 1977Sylvia Pittman, aged 16, disappeared on 6 February 1977,Vickie Howell, aged 26, disappeared on 7 February 1977Connie Jordan, aged 16, disappeared on 9 February 1977Deborah Lamb, aged 20, disappeared on 12 February 1977You can view the episode of Crime Investigation Australia, ‘The Killing Fields of Truro’ that covers this case ~on the internet, but we won’t link it, because crimesYou can read an extract of murderer James Miller’s book, where he details Worrell’s methods, here more info about the crimes and the connection to the still-unsolved case of Lina Marciano, go here you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Disappearance of Brenda Hean
Conspiracy time!Environmental activist and political leader Brenda Hean went missing in 1972 after her plane mysteriously vanished while she was on her way to the nation’s capital to protest the government-sponsored flooding of Lake Pedder.Brenda had been fighting the government and the Hydro-Electric Commission, who’s damming system was to flood the lake, at every turn. She formed the United Tasmania Group, the world’s first Green political party, to try and save the lake. But the government thought she was getting too powerful, and had to silence her, before their million-dollar hydro-electric scheme was quashed for good… maybe. The mystery of what happened to Brenda Hean remains unsolved, but the fight to save both Tasmania and the world from environmental degradation continues.EPISODE NOTES:In 1972, Brenda was on a mission to save Lake Pedder, a glacial lake located in south west Tasmania that was being flooded by the Tasmanian Hydro-Electric Scheme. In a last-ditch effort to get the pollies interested in her beloved lake, she was going to fly to Canberra to write Save Lake Pedder in the sky. But her plane never made it to Canberra. It vanished somewhere around the north-east of the state, and Brenda and the pilot, Max Price, were never seen again.People immediately believed that someone from the government or the Hydro-Electric Commission were responsible for her disappearance – a belief that was reinforced when it was discovered that the plane’s hangar was broken into, and the survival beacons taken from the plane. But would the government really go so far as to murder a woman, just to keep their dam in place?We may never know what happened to Brenda Hean, but her legacy lives on. Her protesting with the Lake Pedder Action Committee, and later her political campaigning through the United Tasmania Group laid the foundations for the green political movement we all know and vote for today. Without Brenda, there would be no Greens parties, and the world would be in an even worse state that it’s already in, if that’s even possible.Our main source this week was the book Whatever happened to Brenda Hean? by Scott Millwood. Scott was handed the police files relating to this case by an anonymous person with the note ‘use these for good’. He created a documentary investigating her disappearance, and this is the book version of that doco. It’s pretty good but be warned, there’s a bit of author insertion and a lot of wild speculation. We did our best to stick to the facts but it’s a little tricky when so much of the events have been quite fictionalised.You can read a little about the history of the Save Lake Pedder campaign here history, bitta mystery in this article here Hean’s missing persons page is here you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
Technical Difficulties in the Land of Oz
Interstate communications have broken down!And your hosts will be getting back to you as soon as they can! (Which will be Friday)If you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
Eurydice Dixon
Something a little different this week, friends.Your girls do like to talk about murders, but we are not excited when they happen. Twenty-two year old aspiring comedian Eurydice Dixon was brutally raped and murdered by a stranger walking home from a comedy gig in Melbourne in June 2018. Her death has sparked outrage nationwide, particularly after police superintendent David Clayton advised women to "take responsibility" for their own safety.We are tired of hearing about the deaths of so many wonderful women and even more tired of women being blamed when a man decides to cut their life short.This week we share our thoughts, our sadness and our anger in a little bonus episode. We will release a full-length episode on the tragically short life of Eurydice Dixon after the trial.You can read about Eurydice’s impact here can learn more about Destroy the Joint’s Counting Dead Women project on their Facebook page us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
UPDATE: The Murders of Karlie Pearce-Stevenson and Khandalyce
A brief update episode to discuss the new developments in the trial and sentencing of the murderer of Karlie Pearce-Stevenson and Khandalyce.If you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
The Murders of Karlie Pearce-Stevenson and Khandalyce
Two bodies lay thousands of kilometers apart – one, a two-year-old girl in a suitcase on the side of the highway in South Australia, the other, a twenty-year-old woman left lying next to a log in the Belanglo State Forest. No one was looking for them. No one even knew they were missing.When the body of the little girl was finally discovered, seven years after she was killed, police knew she must have a mother somewhere out there. They looked to the body found in Belanglo, and found the little girl’s mother. Karlie Pearce-Stevenson and Khandalyce Pearce had their names back, and now the police just had to discover who killed them – and who had spend the previous five years stealing thousands of dollars from Karlie’s bank account, and using her phone to pretend to her family that she was still alive.Please be warned that this episode contains descriptions of violence against children.When a body was found in the Belanglo State Forest on August 29, 2010, speculation was rife that the Backpacker Murderer Ivan Milat had more victims. Milat was ruled out, however, and the body of the young woman would lie in the morgue, unidentified, nicknamed the Belanglo Angel.Years later, the body of a child was found, over a thousand kilometers away in Wynarka, Western Australia. This poor little girl would also remain unidentified, until a tip from Crime Stoppers gave her her name back. She was Khandalyce Pearce, and police would uncover that she was the daughter of the Belanglo Angel, Karlie Pearce-Stevenson.Police were determined to bring to justice whatever lowlife had left a mother and a daughter to rot in the woods alone, a thousand miles apart from each other. They found Karlie’s ex-boyfriend, a man named Daniel James Holdom, who had stolen up to $100,000 of Karlie’s welfare benefits over a period of around five years, who also just happened to be a convicted child molester.This case is still ongoing, so please watch out for a future update.There is no book written about this case yet, so your best way of getting information is to read the archives of your favourite Australian newspaper. Here’s a few links to get you started.Websleuths is the world’s most popular true crime forum, and it is full of crazy housewives who have too much time on their hands, but they are great for information consolidation. You can find an amazing archive of news article to do with the case here can also read the threads on Karlie and Khandalyce here can read every media release the South Australian police gave about the case here read a good overview of the case, up until the bodies were identified, this article here is good Also the first article to put forward the link between the girl in the suitcase and the Belanglo Angel.To read about the identity theft aspect of the case, go here us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
JonBenet Ramsey Thoughts/Feelings/Opinions
In this bonus episode, we discuss the infamous murder of JonBenet Ramsey, and have a surprisingly civil debate about the possible perpetrators of this horrible crime.EPISODE NOTES:Six year old JonBenet Ramsey was murdered on Christmas Eve of 1996. The crime has never been solved, and ever since then, literally thousands of people have been considered suspects or persons of interest in the case. But many people believe that the perpetrator was much closer to JonBenet - a member of her own family. John, Patsy, and Burke Ramsey have all been considered suspects at some point or another. This episode is just a brief rundown of the case before we get into who we believe killed JonBenet.If you like what we do please consider supporting us on PATREONSubscribe to the podcast on ITUNES, STITCHER, SPOTIFY or your podcatcher of choice.Find us on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM or EMAIL us on
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Podcast Details
May 28th, 2018
Latest Episode
Dec 1st, 2019
Release Period
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