DETECTIVES from South Australia were in Wonthaggi for three days last week as part of the investigation into the disappearance of former local woman Susan Goodwin.
Detective Sergeant Justin Thompson said he believes Ms Goodwin was murdered, although her body has not been found.
Susan was 39 and living in Port Lincoln when she disappeared on July 19, 2002.
The Major Crime Investigation Branch in South Australia has commenced Operation Persist after it received extra resources to revisit cold cases.
Det Sgt Thompson said that following a review, the Susan Goodwin case presented further opportunities for investigation.
“We believe Susan was murdered, and that there could be people in Port Lincoln who know what happened but are holding on to secrets.
“We’ve now come to Wonthaggi for a couple of reasons.
“Susan grew up in the town and so did her partner. Other persons from Wonthaggi had gone to Port Lincoln from Wonthaggi while they were there.
“We want to talk to anyone locally who may have been told something over the years and are now holding on to secrets.”
A $200,000 reward has been in place since 2009 for information that would lead to a conviction or the location of Susan’s body.
“There may be issues from her past that come back. We’re targeting people known to her.
“Susan moved to Port Lincoln in the mid to late 1990s to be with her partner so it was five or so years before she disappeared.
“When she was in Port Lincoln she remained in regular contact with persons here. Members of her family are still in Gippsland. Her mother and sister live locally.
“Susan’s father Don is now in Bairnsdale, but he was well known in this area as a publican.
“He was recently diagnosed with cancer, he is elderly, and is searching for answers before it’s too late for him.”
The Goodwin family has endured unspeakable tragedy.
Two of Susan’s sisters and her brother were killed in a car accident near Bairnsdale. Susan was also a passenger in the car.
“We’re gathering as much information as possible. With the help of Victoria Police, we’ve located and spoken to people known to Susan and if there are any other people with information, they can let us know via Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
“Crime Stoppers can transfer the call directly to South Australian detectives if the person wishes.”
Det Sgt Thompson said he’d received a couple of calls locally after details of the investigation were printed in the Sentinel-Times last week.
“We’ve received a lot of information in the past three weeks. We’ve set up Taskforce Lincoln in South Australia with 12 police officers in Adelaide and Port Lincoln assisting.
“It was a very big case and still remains a big case in Port Lincoln.
“We’ve distributed posters throughout the town, we’ve placed ‘missing person’ beer coasters in licenced premises, five police cars have advertising wraps on their rear windscreens calling for information, and we’ve sent letters to prisoners in Port Lincoln and to all on community corrections orders appealing for assistance and information.
“We believe Susan was an occasional drug user and may have had associates in the drug scene.
“We have received information over the years that this may have led to her disappearance.
“This has been investigated thoroughly and there has been no evidence to suggest this was the case, although it has not been discounted.”
What happened to Susan?