Bowraville - the pain of three lost children remains raw

Bowraville's rich history has been shadowed in modern times by the decades-old murder of three children.
Bowraville's rich history has been shadowed in modern times by the decades-old murder of three children. Leigh Jensen

DETECTIVE Inspector Gary Jubelin wore a tired, sad expression as he fronted a media scrum on the pavement running along Goulburn Street in Surry Hills on Saturday afternoon.

The NSW Police Homicide Squad's highest profile criminal investigator of recent times had earlier in the day requested attendance outside Sydney Police Centre at 2.30pm.

DI Jubelin quietly announced he was making a statement following a decision by NSW Attorney General Greg Smith that there would be no re-trial of a man acquitted over murders which occurred in Bowraville in 1990 and 1991.

Few expected they'd be hearing the man who has relentlessly pursued justice since 1997 to say he'd finally come to accept the murders were likely to remain unsolved.

"The reality of it is, and I don't like to offer false hope to families, this is the end of the road," Jubelin said bluntly.

"I told the families this application is the last effort we can make.

"Now in saying that, homicides are never closed.

"But the reality is there are no further lines of investigation to follow up."

And with that, the dogged police officer who has lived and breathed the case for almost 16 years, turned and walked away.

In 2007, then NSW Labor Premier Morris Iemma took a personal interest in the case and gazetted a $250,000 reward for information on the murders which remains in force.

The reward is offered for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the deaths of children Evelyn Greenup, Clinton Speedy-Duroux and Colleen Walker.

The loss of the children within the space of five months during the early 1990s was devastating for the tight-knit Bowraville and wider Macksville-Nambucca Heads community.

Colleen Walker, 16, disappeared on September 13, 1990, and her weighted-down clothing was later found in the Nambucca River.

Although her body was never found, she is presumed dead.

Evelyn Greenup, aged 4, is believed to have been murdered on October 4, 1990.

Her remains were found in bushland in April, 1991.

Clinton Speedy-Duroux, 16, was murdered on February 1, 1991.

His remains were found in bushland a few weeks later.

After an investigation led by Detective Inspector Jubelin, a man was charged.

He twice went to trial but was acquitted each time.

The case has been the subject of hearings, inquests, a Four Corners report and an Australian Story feature.

The original police investigation and trial transcripts are now used to teach undergraduates in law and trainee detectives.

Numerous scholarly articles have been written about the investigation and many people at the heart of the case openly express serious disquiet.

Surviving family members and their supporters are now preparing to lobby governments for a Royal Commission.

And while (at least for the moment) Gary Jubelin is resigned to ending the investigation, his closing words from Australian Story on ABC-TV, probably best illustrate the man's true feelings and those of the wider Bowraville community.

He said: "Certainly at this stage, at this point in time, with the murder of these three children no-one has been called into account.

"So I'd have to say, no, justice hasn't been done.

"But what I can say and I think this is, if any comfort the community can take and the relatives can take, they know that people are in there really trying for them and trying to bring justice to the matter.

"No, we won't give up.

"You can't give up.

"It's not an option - three kids have been murdered.

"We've given an undertaking to the community.

"We can't give up on this.

"I sit here very comfortably sending a message out to the person that's murdered these people that we will do everything in our power, and I'm talking the whole of the New South Wales Police, to bring to justice the person that murdered three children.

"The pain's still very raw in that community.

"I think it would be extremely positive if it was resolved.

"I think it would bring closure and the community could move on."

Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

All information will be treated confidentially.

Topics:  bowraville murders editors picks

Dreamworld ride worker: "It couldn't have been foreseen"

A former Dreamworld senior ride operator has broken his silence

Another store leaves Ipswich mall

SHUT DOWN: R.M. Williams in the Ipswich Mall has closed with Wednesday as their last day of trading.

R.M. Williams no longer has a store in Ipswich

Woman arrested after allegedly aiming car at emergency room

Ipswich Hospital emergency department drop-off and ambulance bay.

Patient allegedly loses cool after long wait in emergency

Local Partners

Workmates honour crash victim with tribute

UPDATE: Tanya Lyell is being remembered as a young mother dedicated to her family and work as the town she called home mourns its loss.

WATCH: NASA space station is live, see the view from above

In this picture taken from NASA's International Space Station from April 2015, the SpaceX Dragon is captured with the 57.7-foot-long Canadarm2 robotic arm before its installation to the Harmony module.

See the world from a new perspective as space station passes Rocky

Artist feeds us pop straight from heart

FEED THE BEAST: Singer-songwriter Emma Dean is this week's featured artist.

Emerge's Calen Le Couteur recently caught up with Emma Dean

Your guide to a great night out in Ipswich

Dennis Knight and the Black Cats play Club Services Ipswich Saturday night

Check out some live entertainment this weekend

RECAP: The Bachelorette S2E12 - the finale

Georgia Love pictured in a scene from The Bachelorette finale.

GEORGIA chooses Lee and leaves Matty J heartbroken.

The Bachelorette finale: Georgia declares her love for Lee

Georgia Love with The Bachelorette winner Lee Elliott.

MATTY J left heartbroken in emotional grand final.

Buy your own brothel: Scarlet Harem for sale

OPPORTUNITY KNOCKS: The Coast's first brothel, Scarlet Harem at Kunda Park, is up for sale.

Coast brothel madam sells up

Tom Cruise credits success to Scientology

Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise credits his success to Scientology

Hacksaw Ridge leads AACTA Awards nominations

Andrew Garfield and Teresa Palmer in a scene from the movie Hacksaw Ridge.

MEL Gibson's wartime drama opens in cinemas next week.

ABBA to reunite for virtual live experience


ABBA have confirmed they are to reunite - in virtual reality form

Tough times in CBD: Woolies says goodbye Ipswich

Woolworths in the Ipswich Mall.Photo: Rob Williams / The Queensland Times

The last day of trading will be January 1

Is Woolworths departure good news for Ipswich CBD?

Artist impression of the Ipswich Mall for the rejuvenation project to be undertaken by Ipswich City Properties

Council is on track to release a detailed plan before December

Look at me! Kath and Kim home up for sale

Kath and Kim from the iconic Aussie TV series.

'Crack open the Baileys and grab a box of BBQ Shapes'

How to fit 100,000 new homes on the Coast

Property, real estate, housing, suburb,  August 2016

Fitting 2m extra people in south-east Qld in 25 years a balance

Hinterland horse stud passed in for $8.25 million

UNREAL: This Maleny estate is incredible.

12-bedroom hinterland horse stud still available

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?