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Police renew pleas for public assistance

Shandee Blackburn.
Shandee Blackburn. Contributed

UPDATE:

POLICE have today renewed their pleas for public assistance in the murder investigation of Shandee Blackburn.

Regional crime coordinator, Detective Inspector Paul Elliot the cause of Shandee's death is still not known.

"We have a lot of resources pumping into this investigation," he said.

"We do have some CCTV footage which obviously over the weekend was a bit hard to source.

"We're in the process of door-knocking the area yet again to try identify the cameras and the footage that may give us some information to any suspect or point us in the right direction."

Shandee Blackburn, 23, was killed in the early hours of Sunday morning in what police are describing as a "vicious" attack.

Police believe Shandee was walking home from work at 12.20am when the attack occurred, she was found on Boddington St.

Det Insp Elliot has urged anyone with any information to come forward.

"Anyone in that area needs to come forward and talk to us, even if the information that they have is (minor) so we can try and identify an offender," he said.

"The most minor piece of evidence that you think may not be important may be crucial to this investigation."

 

SHANDEE WAS MAKING PLANS

SHANDEE Blackburn had been talking about plans for the future with her work colleagues just days before she found dead on the edge of the city centre early Saturday morning.

The 23-year-old died in Boddington St while paramedics tried to save her life, though earlier reports indicated she had died in hospital.

The Harrup Park Country Club employee has been described by colleagues as a hard-working and friendly young woman.

Harrup Park general manager Michael Jones said the news of Shandee's death had shocked staff.

"The board and staff at Harrup Park are devastated by this news," Mr Jones said.

"It was disbelief then shock, then the realisation that awful things like this happen in Mackay and it's obviously very sad news."

Counselling has been offered to all Harrup Park staff. Mr Jones said Shandee had recently appeared happier with her life than in the past.

"She had been talking about plans she had. In recent times we noticed how happy she was with her life," he said.

Police and detectives at the scene of a homicide investigation on Boddington Street.
Police and detectives at the scene of a homicide investigation on Boddington Street. Lee Constable

Mackay detectives are being assisted by officers from the state homicide group in Brisbane in their investigation and are calling for public assistance to help solve the crime.

Central Police Region crime co-ordinator Detective Acting Inspector Paul Elliot said officers were investigating all options, including whether or not the attack was random. Police believe she was walking home from work about 12.20am when the attack occurred.

"We are very interested in speaking with any people who may have been in or around the Boddington St, Juliet St area, around the McDonald's (restaurant) or Shakespeare St area either late Friday night or early Saturday morning," Det Elliot said.

"We can identify that the young girl was walking along Juliet St when she had cause to turn left into Boddington St where she was met with foul play.

"At this stage there is some property outstanding; we can't confirm whether it was an attempted robbery or an opportunistic thing after the attack."

Residents of Boddington St say they heard a man screaming for help just before police and paramedics arrived.

"He was saying, 'My friend's on the ground, my friend, help her'," a resident, who did not want to be identified, said.

The resident said there was lots of "carrying on" before the screaming began.

"We heard a noise and when we looked down there was a bunch of drunk people and there was a girl lying on the floor," the resident said.

"We were looking out from our bedroom window. There was a guy screaming and crying."

Anyone with information should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

 

IN THE PRIME OF HER LIFE

CENTRAL police regional crime co-ordinator Detective Acting Inspector Paul Elliot has described the attack on Shandee Blackburn as vicious and callous.

"It's an attack on a young girl who was in the prime of her life," Det Elliot said.

"It was a very callous attack on a very young and defenceless female."

Police have not disclosed how Ms Blackburn was killed or what injuries she sustained during the attack.

However, a post mortem, which has been scheduled for tomorrow, will shed light on the exact cause of death.

Det Elliot said information from the public was crucial in solving this case.

"We urge anyone who sees anything suspicious to leave it where it is, telephone the police and we will take the appropriate response," he said.

Det Elliot was confident police would solve the crime.

"We are very eager to see this matter be brought to conclusion," he said.

"We are appealing to anyone who was driving their car in that area, around midnight, or just after midnight, on Friday night or early Saturday morning to come forward.

"Even if they think they have a minor insignificant piece of information for us it's imperative that they come forward.

"Because that piece of information may be the key to solving this matter."

The crime has left the Mackay community shocked, he said.

"I think our hearts need to go out to the people who have been affected by this," he said.

Topics:  attack, boddington street, editors picks, shandee blackburn



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