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The Wanda Beach Murders

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  • The Wanda Beach Murders

    Any info welcome regarding this case (Sidney, 1965).

    + one question : is Christopher Wilder a good suspect ?


  • #2

    I recall reading somewhere recently that a bloke called Derek Percy, who's still in jail over another killing, is now suspected of the Wanda Beach murders; also the disappearance of the Beaumont kids in Adelaide in 1966 and another little girl (whose name I can't remember, but who was actually the subject of the article I read) who disappeared from St Kilda (Melbourne) around the same time.

    I think it said Percy was a sailor, which if true might explain how he came to be in these three distant-from-each other coastal Australian cities.

    I've never really studied the case, so I can't comment on Christopher Wilder.
    Chief Superintendent Brownlow: "Are there any Tension Indicators? Over!"

    DI Galloway: "Tension indicators?! They're throwing bloody petrol bombs. Sir."


    • #3
      There was a Documentary made about this a couple of years ago.It's available on DVD but only in Australia.


      Hosted by Steve Liebmann, this groundbreaking series looks at some of Australia's most infamous murder cases such as Anita Cobby, Victor Chang, Wanda Beach and 'The Backpacker Murders'.

      Crime Investigation Australia includes heartbreaking interviews from victims, loved ones and the investigators who brought the criminals to justice. These horrific crimes are bought to life in dramatic re-enactments shot in the actual locations the crimes took place.

      What makes a serial killer tick? How do forensic experts solve crimes using cutting edge technology? Who are the men and women that risk their lives to put criminals behind bars? These questions and more are answered.


      • #4
        Thanks Phryne and Belinda,

        acc to wiki, there were 3 main suspects : Alan Bassett, Derek Percy and Christopher Wilder.
        Michael Connelly ("Crime Beat") alludes to possible murders committed by Wilder in Australia in the early 70s, but there is nothing about the WB murders.
        I think the case against Bassett has been quite dismissed.

        Problem is that I know nothing about Derek Percy, except that he apparently killed children.

        Wilder was involved in a gang rape in 1963, on a beach.
        In the 80s, his victims were young and attractive women.

        Could be him in Wanda Beach.



        • #5
          Although I think I've heard the name, I didn't know anything about this interesting case. Killed in a public area in daylight and no one saw anything?

          I do remember when the manhunt was on for Wilder here in the States. As I recall, his method was to claim that he was photographer looking for models and approach attractive teenage females who would sometimes fall for the story and leave with him. I don't know if he would have used this play all those years previous.
          This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

          Stan Reid


          • #6
            Hi Stan,

            there was already something about photo / pornography in 1968-69.

            From Michael Newton, "The Encyclopedia of Serial Killers":

            "Wilder married at age 23, but the union lasted only a few days. His bride complained of sexual abuse and finally left him after finding panties (not her own) and photographs of naked women in a brief case Wilder carried in his car. In November 1969, he used nude photographs to extort sex from an Australian student nurse ; she complained to the police but charges were ultimately dropped when she refused to testify in court."

            The Wanda Beach victims were teenage girls. Thus the victimology fits.

            After he was charged with rape in 1963 (or 62), Wilder received electroshock therapy, which apparently made him even more violent.



            • #7
              Hi David,

              Too bad we here in America couldn't have given him some electric shock therapy - sitting.

              I was a minor contributer to that book you mention if you have the Second Edition. I'm listed in the Second Edition Preface. It's a good source with or without me.
              Last edited by sdreid; 02-22-2010, 07:51 PM.
              This my opinion and to the best of my knowledge, that is, if I'm not joking.

              Stan Reid


              • #8
                Hi Stan,

                yes, that's you...after one Rod Poteet...! Better than figuring between Melvin Rees and Vera Renczi in the A-Z, I must say.

                I'd like to know more about the other suspect, Derek Percy (this one to needs electric therapy, btw).
                Apparently he killed "children" - although I don't know of what age, and the WB victims were only 15.



                • #9
                  Would anyone be able to point me toward a map of Wanda Beach and the immediate area as it was in 1965, when the murders took place? I'm interested primarily in where the victims were found, where the surf club stood, and where the children had their picnic. Also what entrances (if there were established entrances) people commonly used to reach the beach.

                  - Ginger