The Frankston Murders

Casefile Presents

In June 1993, Elizabeth Stevens, 18, was murdered on her way home from the bus stop. Her death began a seven-week reign of terror for the people of Frankston. A serial killer was on the loose. No one was safe, not young mother, Debbie Fream, 22, taken on a trip to the shops, nor Natalie Russell, 17, murdered on her way home from school. The serial killer, Paul Denyer was captured and sentenced to life in prison. On appeal, he was granted a 30-year minimum sentence. Fast forward 30 years and Denyer has applied for parole. Award winning crime writer Vikki Petraitis was on patrol with police the night the final  murder took place. She wrote the bestselling book, The Frankston Murders which has never been out of print. Vikki has revisited the case in a longform podcast to remind the world why Denyer must never be released. The Frankston Murders Podcast uncovers new material and new victims stalked by Denyer in the lead-up to the killings. Vikki interviews prison guards, police officers, family members, and people caught in the periphery of a serial killer. Credits: Created by Vikki Petraitis Research and writing by Vikki Petraitis Audio production and scoring by Mike Migas (https://mikemigas.com/) Audio production by Anthony Telfer Archive production by Catherine Seccombe/Arcdive (https://www.arcdive.com/) Archival audio supplied by The Footage Company / Nine Network Australia

  • 3 minutes 55 seconds
    Casefile Presents: Troubled Waters
    Troubled Waters is a 10-part ground-breaking podcast exploring the untold story of Louisa Ioannidis' tragic and mysterious death in 2011. Louisa Ioannidis was only 24. Beautiful, courageous, and vulnerable, yet her untimely death barely received a two-line report in a small local newspaper. Her body was discovered by passers-by in a local creek, clad in a pink dressing gown. Despite being a strong swimmer, police quickly determined there were no suspicious circumstances. Yet no one has been able to explain how or why she came to enter the creek.

    Louisa’s brother Tass has always doubted the findings and is desperate for answers.

    Over a decade after Louisa’s death, Private Investigator Julia Robson embarks on a fresh investigation and explores the full story of Louisa’s short life and the events leading up to her tragic passing. Together with Producer Clare McGrath, they uncover a gripping narrative full of intrigue. From an international kidnapping, a daring escape and a family’s desperate bid to stay together, it all unravels into a downward spiral exacerbated by a toxic relationship, all the while revealing flaws in a family violence support system that desperately needs fixing.
    16 June 2024, 9:12 pm
  • 58 minutes 36 seconds
    11: Episode 11: The ever after
    When Denyer’s reign of terror was over, he left devastation in his wake. Family and friends struggle to make sense of the crimes. Debbie Fream’s son, now nearly 30 speaks of his loss. With the parole bid looming, we all need to be warned.  
    29 March 2023, 8:40 pm
  • 1 hour 6 minutes
    10: Episode 10: We need to talk about Denyer
    So who is Paul Denyer? He was a boy with some strange and concerning habits which people noticed. As a 21-year-old in prison, he had to navigate a whole new world. We meet the people who met him in prison. 
    29 March 2023, 8:30 pm
  • 42 minutes 13 seconds
    9: Episode 9: The sentence that didn’t last
    As Natalie’s family holds her funeral, the police prepare the case against Denyer. He pleads guilty and the judge gives him a life sentence. He appeals and is granted a 30-year non-parole period. Widespread community outrage follows. 
    29 March 2023, 8:20 pm
  • 1 hour 1 minute
    8: Episode 8: The confession
    Denyer’s confession is like nothing the police have seen before. He is cocky and boastful and details his crimes with a note of pride in his voice. However, he is cagey about some aspects. He talks to the detectives like they are all friends. 
    29 March 2023, 8:10 pm
  • 45 minutes 8 seconds
    7: Episode 7: The net closes in
    While Natalie’s loved ones spend the night wondering if the body found could be her, police frantically hunt the killer, fearing he’ll strike again. When two cops report checking a car near the murder scene, his name comes up on the computer. 
    29 March 2023, 8:00 pm
  • 59 minutes 45 seconds
    6: Episode 6: Natalie, the final victim
    Natalie Russell was on her way home from school at 2.30 in the afternoon when she was targeted by the serial killer. He had grown cocky and left evidence at the scene that would link him to the murders. 
    29 March 2023, 7:50 pm
  • 43 minutes 30 seconds
    5: Episode 5: The investigation
    A frantic hunt for Debbie is shadowed by images of her partner Garry and their tiny baby. He begs for Debbie to come home on the nightly news. Four days later, a farmer discovers her body. The public panics and fears of a serial killer grow.
    29 March 2023, 7:40 pm
  • 57 minutes 35 seconds
    4: Episode 4: A young mother vanishes
    Debbie Fream’s new baby was just 12 days old when she invited a friend over for dinner to show him the baby. In the middle of cooking, she ran out of milk and left the friend with the baby while she went to the local store. She never returned. 
    29 March 2023, 7:30 pm
  • 54 minutes 23 seconds
    3: Episode 3: Attempted abduction
    After work Thursday 8 July, Roszsa Toth caught the train home to Seaford. Walking in the dark past the Seaford Reserve, Roszsa saw a man watching her. He suddenly lunged and grabbed her. She fought her way from him and was picked up by a passing car.
    29 March 2023, 7:20 pm
  • 55 minutes 28 seconds
    2: Episode 2: Stalking turns to murder
    When Elizabeth Stevens left Tasmania, seeking a career in the army, she stayed with relatives, finally settling in Langwarrin to finish her studies. On a cold Friday night in June, her worried aunt and uncle wait for her, but she doesn’t come home. 
    29 March 2023, 7:10 pm
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