SBS turns true crime focus to Adelaide

SBS True Stories podcasts delve into gay hate crimes in Adelaide.


SBS has extended its online series on gay hate crimes in New South Wales to similar murders which took place in Adelaide through a series of podcasts.

Journalist Mark Whittaker said: “It’s important to reveal the truth behind these crimes which took place not only in New South Wales but also other locations like Adelaide. Delivering in-depth investigations in an audio format like the SBS True Stories podcast is an engaging way of opening up the conversation around a buried part of Australia’s history.”

Presented as the third season of the acclaimed SBS True Stories podcast, the five-episode investigation is being brought to light for the first time by SBS as part of the network’s multi-platform event Deep Water.

Created by SBS, in collaboration with award-winning Australian investigative journalist and writer Mark Whittaker, each episode focuses on an individual case, delving deeper into the horrific crimes dotting Australia’s south coast that span decades from the 70s to now. The SBS True Stories podcast has also been adapted into an illustrated long read titled Out of Sight: The untold story of Adelaide’s gay hate murders, available online from Monday 17 October.

The first three episodes of the SBS True Stories podcast are available to listen now, with the final two episodes to be released over the coming week.

SBS True Stories Podcast Season Three
Episode 1 – Rex, the beat, and the bashing
Available now
Late one night in 1992, Rex Robinson pulled his car into one of Adelaide’s most notorious beats. High beam on, Rex sees a man lying face down, motionless in the middle of the road. It’s the night that embroiled Rex in a vicious bashing case which made headlines and outraged the gay community, leaving him without a job and wishing he’d never gone to the police.

Episode 2 – Police become the suspects
Available now
Dr. George Duncan’s body was pulled from the River Torrens in 1972. At the time, homosexuality was illegal. Police were the suspects in the murder. It’s a case that’s gone on to become one of South Australia’s most notorious unsolved murders, altered history for all gay men in the state.

Episode 3 – The beats generation
Available now
Beats are secretive places – they provide anonymity for men seeking sex, but this secrecy also provides a cover and protection for their attackers. “Todd” ran away at 16 and lived on the streets of Adelaide. The street kids he hung out with used to head to beats and used Todd as bait to lure men into the bushes because of how young he looked. This wasn’t the only group targeting homosexuals at beats.

Episode 4 – An ordinary guy
Available Friday 14 October
David “John” Saint was an ordinary guy. He worked, bought three houses, did them up and sold them. On April 16, 1991, he was found covered in blood on a main Adelaide street by a passer-by. He didn’t make it. From day one, police said publicly that robbery was the motive. But this didn’t sit well with the gay community.

Episode 5 – How to get away with murder
Available Monday 17 October
There is a way you can take a gay murder and make it not a gay murder. You get a good lawyer. This is what happened in 2011 to the brutal killing of Andrew Negre that continues to bounce around the legal system.

The True Stories podcast joins the wider Deep Water – Online Investigations collection, which also includes the Gay-Hate Decades: 30 Unsolved Deaths online interactive exploring alleged gay hate crimes in Sydney and the NSW region.

Deep Water – Online Investigations is an online interactive hub developed by Blackfella Films and SBS, and produced by SBS, which allows users to explore unsolved murders both within Bondi and wider Australia.

It features in-depth extras around the Deep Water drama and Deep Water – The Real Story documentary, with behind-the-scenes videos of the drama and documentary, cast and crew interviews, news and current affair articles, and photo galleries showcasing Bondi Beach, where the drama and documentary are set.

Deep Water concludes Thursday 13 October, at 8.30pm.
Documentary Deep Water: The Real Story premieres Sunday 16 October, at 8.30pm on SBS.

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