EPISODE TWO: Who was Annette Deverell?
The second episode of Annette: Cold Case Unlocked delves deeper into the mysterious death of teenager Annette Deverell almost 40 years ago.
Suspicions and secrets are revealed as Annette's circle of friends and acquaintances recall their teen years in the sleepy seaside town of Mandurah, south of Perth, in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
The first episode of the four-part Australian Community Media podcast, The Skeleton in the Forest, was released on September 11 and was played almost 10,000 times in its first week - ranking No. 1 in Apple Podcast's Australian "top charts" for news content and No. 2 across all categories.
In the second episode, Who was Annette Deverell?, Annette's former high school friends remember the "cool chick" and "rough diamond" they grew up with, the mischief they made around town and the struggles she kept secret.
They also recall the shock and fear that followed her disapperance from outside Mandurah Post Office on the night of Saturday September 13, 1980.
It's possible that Annette died that very night.
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In July 1982, two young trail bike riders would find her skull and some bones in bush near a dirt track off Scarp Road about 30 minutes drive from where she was last seen in the centre of Mandurah.
The terrain where her remains were found is hilly with dense jarrah forest.
In the 1970s and 80s, Mandurah locals would chuck a keg in the ute before heading to the hills near the neighbouring communities of Pinjarra and Dwellingup for a Sunday drinking session.
They would swim in the nearby dams and the boys would go hunting for rabbits.
Some even grew their marijuana there.
They knew how to navigate the smaller bush tracks.
On a drive through the area, Trevor Hewitt, a high school friend of Annette's who is heard in the podcast discussing his own theories about her death, says the landscape hasn't changed much over the years.
"The population coming to Mandurah has brought more bush tracks and bike riders but pretty much this is how it was 40 years ago," he said.
Mr Hewitt is convinced that someone who was "a local" at the time must have dumped Annette's body in the bush.
"We knew those back tracks because people used to drink like mad and drive," he said.
"All the local blokes knew all the back tracks. We all had guns, we all went hunting, we all went fishing, we all went marroning.
"That's what brings me to think it was someone local-ish who knew their way around to go up Scarp Road."
Do you have information that could help police solve this case? Contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Contact Carla Hildebrandt at email@example.com. You can remain anonymous.
- Written and presented by journalist Carla Hildebrandt, the first two episodes of Annette: Cold Case Unlocked are available now on your favourite podcast app. Search "Annette: Cold Case Unlocked"in Apple Podcast, Spotify, PodBean, TuneIn and SoundCloud.
Photo credits: Margaret Carver, Mandurah Historical Society, Carla Hildebrandt
Music credit: https://www.freesfx.co.uk