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Thread: South Australian Cold Case : Melissa Brown, aged 15, last seen with her mother who was later found murdered

  1. #1
    Senior Member blighted star's Avatar
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    South Australian Cold Case : Melissa Brown, aged 15, last seen with her mother who was later found murdered

    I'm posting this one because it's made me REALLY ANGRY. This kid's case is mentioned frequently in a series of missing persons ads that's been running on Australian pay TV crime channel "CI"/617 for a few years now. They look like ads created by the police Missing Person's Media Unit but if you pay attention, the voice-over is instantly recognisable as the guy doing the ads for all CI channel's upcoming crime shows.

    This leads me to believe CI channel had an employee throw together a few ads they could run between shows (ETA nope apparently the Australian Federal Police are to blame for this misinformation, still it wouldn't have been too hard for this supposed CrimeInvestigation channel to ... INVESTIGATE & compare sources - it's taken me all of 5 mins to discover the real circumstances, see bottom of post for link) - which is great, it's getting names & faces out there. We don't have missing persons regularly featured anywhere in Australia. You might occasionally see a newspaper or TV special, but they usually only do the most high profile cases. So how could someone putting in the effort to gain nation-wide exposure for Melissa's case possibly make me angry?

    It made me angry when I accidentally stumbled across a South Australian Police official missing persons entry for Melissa. The ads on CI Australia give a VERY strong impression that Melissa was a troubled teen with a history of running. You're left thinking her Mum is sitting at home, waiting for a call from her daughter, just to let her know she's ok. Add the year she "ran away from home" & you think, well she's 28 now. If she has a history of running away, maybe there was a good reason. If she wants to stay missing from her mother/family's lives, that's her choice. Some of the last words said about Melissa in her own missing ad are "& she was known to frequent truck stops" - immediately giving the impression she was an habitual runaway & hitch hiker.

    The truth is that as a result of unavoidable circumstances (there's news footage of her Mum looking dazed, dressed in nightclothes with younger children standing in a suburban street & it makes me wonder if their home burnt down? ), Melissa & her Mum, Rosemary Brown, aged 40, found themselves living in a male friends caravan in a home driveway in Blair Athol. They had met the man when they were all residents at the Windsor Gardens Caravan Park (like a trailer park but possibly more temporary & transient). While they stayed in the driveway caravan, her 11yr old brother stayed in a friends home in Klemzig.

    Some reports say Melissa & her Mum were last seen walking to visit her younger brother, which is possible I suppose depending on the habits of the people they left him with. The male friend with the caravan claims they left on foot at 2.30am Saturday 13th May 2000. He claims he & their 11yr old son/brother searched for them unsuccessfully when they hadn't returned by morning & mother AND daughter were BOTH reported missing Sunday 14th 2000.

    On 16th June the male friend left South Australia & returned to his home state of Victoria where he moved into a caravan park at Dandenong. Melissa's little brother was left with the friend in Klemzig.

    Rosemary Brown's body was found dumped in a mangrove swamp at Garden Island just 2 weeks later on 2nd July. Melissa left her home WITH HER MOTHER on May 13th 2000 & there hasn't been a single sighting of her since.

    Though her home circumstances were very clearly far from ideal, so far I havn't found anything to indicate she was ever a runaway & most pix & vids seem to show her with family. Her case is completely misrepresented on Australian TV at the moment. They don't mention her mother's murder AT ALL. They know who Melissa was with, they know where she was last seen & where she was headed. Surely it would make more sense to show pix of Melissa & her Mum & the route they would've taken??

    This link has more detailed information some of which conflicts with the link above

    This link I've just discovered also points out the "gross inaccuracies" currently being repeated about Melissa. It's disturbing to see that people were aware of this at least a year ago but nothing has been corrected. This link has a comments section & someone who knew Rosemary & Melissa says she doesn't understand why the truckstop comments were ever made because she never knew them to do any such thing.


    This is yet another version of the story, it seems to make sense of some of the details that sounded a little off in other articles & it also explains Melissa had stayed for 2 nights in another caravan with her Mum & brother just 100m from the place her mother's body was later found.
    Last edited by blighted star; 06-07-2013 at 01:29 AM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member blighted star's Avatar
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    NSW Crimestoppers are running Melissa's case again, probably because of Karlie & Khandalyce

    Crime Stoppers NSW

    Melissa BROWN

    Circumstances: Rosemary Brown, aged 33 years, along with her daughter Melissa Brown (also known as Melissa Trussell), aged 15 years, and Rosemary?s son, were residents of the Windsor Gardens Caravan Park. On 3 May 2000 they were evicted due to unpaid rent and complaints of youths loitering around their caravan. They moved from their caravan into the caravan of another park resident, Mark Nicholls, at his invitation.

    Three days later, on 7 May 2000, all four were evicted from the caravan park and slept at the Garden Island boat ramp in Mr Nicholls? caravan. The following day, Rosemary arranged for them to stay in the yard of a friend?s home in Blair Athol in Mr Nicholl?s caravan.

    Mr Nicholls was the last to see Rosemary and Melissa, at about 1.30 a.m. on Saturday 13 May 2000, when they left the caravan on foot to find Rosemary?s son.

    Rosemary?s handbag was discovered later that day in Stirling Street, Northfield, although it was not handed to police until 23 May 2000 following a media appeal in relation to the missing women.

    On Sunday 2 July 2000, Rosemary?s body was discovered in the mangroves at Garden Island.

    Melissa has never been found and is suspected to have been murdered.

    At time of disappearance:

    Last seen: 13 May 2000
    Age Now: 31
    State: Adelaide, South Australia
    Year of birth: 1984
    Gender: Female
    Height: 162cm
    Hair Colour: Brown
    Eye Colour: Brown

    If you know anything about the disappearance of Melissa, please report online at or call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

    Find more Missing Persons at:

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