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Dance Me to Death: Rachel Barber Murder Investigation

'19.09.2020'

Source: The bad news

The murder of this young girl sparked a heated discussion in the world media in 1999. But even now, after many years, important details of this case remain unknown, and the killer's motives are shocking, they say The bad news.

Photo: Shutterstock

Rachel Elizabeth Barber was born on September 12, 1983. Those around her noted her extraordinary dancing ability, shyness and restraint in relationships with unfamiliar people. In late 1992 or early 1993, the girl's family moved to Mont Albert. Around the same time, the Barber family met Caroline Reed Robertson, who, years later, would become the executioner of the talented dancer.

Screenshot: HyperTrailers EU / YouTube

During 1996 and 1997, Caroline Robertson worked as a nanny for the Barbers, staying with their children, in particular with Rachel.

In 1997, Robertson photographed Rachel for a project. Around September or October 1998, Rachel informed her mother that an influential connoisseur was seriously interested in these photographs of Caroline. During the 1999 summer break, Caroline telephoned one of the younger Barber girls to tell her Rachel's date of birth, as part of a project she was allegedly working on. After receiving this data, Caroline applied for a copy of Rachel's birth certificate. The police believed that it was then that she came to the idea of ​​killing the girl. Wikipedia articles.

On Sunday February 28, 1999, Robertson and Rachel spoke on the phone twice (Robertson called both times). One call was made at 17:24 (the conversation lasted 15 minutes and 27 seconds), and the second was made at 17:45 (29 minutes and 42 seconds).

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In the early morning of March 1, 1999, 15-year-old Rachel Barber went to dance school, and this was the last time her father saw her alive - he brought her to a tram stop on the corner of Riverdale and Elgar Road so that she could get there. to Richmond. They parted at about 9:30. The girl agreed to meet with her father at this tram stop in the evening, at about 18:15.

The parents sounded the alarm the same evening, as soon as their daughter did not appear at the agreed meeting place, from where they were supposed to pick her up.

As early as March 2, when it became apparent that Rachel was indeed missing, the police began a full-scale reconstruction of the events of that day. A huge number of people were interrogated, from her boyfriend to school students and passers-by on the street.

Screenshot: HyperTrailers EU / YouTube

It was revealed that at about 17:35 pm, after school ended, Rachel left school with friends and walked with them down Church Street to Bridge Road. Here she said goodbye to them and at 17:45 walked on.

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Then Rachel met Caroline Reed Robertson, her old friend, and they boarded the tram. Robertson allegedly tricked Rachel by arranging a meeting after dance class and offering her $ 100 to participate in some kind of "psychological experiment." In another version, Robertson told Rachel that she could earn $ 500 if she took part in a confidential psychological survey. A Dance Factory student who rode the same tram that evening later told police, "I remember that Rachel looked very beautiful and that she was just amazing compared to her friend, who seemed like a simpleton."

Screenshot: HyperTrailers EU / YouTube

The girls got off the tram in Pragrand and went to Robertson's apartment. At about 18:40 pm, a bystander saw Rachel in the company of a girl whom he later identified as Robertson near her home. Some time later, the neighbor heard screams from Caroline's apartment, but he did not attach any importance to them.

The police searched Reed's apartment, where they found bags of clothes that could not have belonged to Caroline, but matched the size of Barber's clothes, as well as an application for a copy of the birth certificate in the name of Rachel Elizabeth Barber. The suspect was immediately taken to the police station, where she soon confessed to the murder.

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On Saturday, March 13, police went to Kilmore to search for the body, which was soon found in a shallow grave with a telephone wire around its neck. Envy of the more successful and beautiful Barber, the desire to reincarnate herself in her, as well as an unhealthy and manic craving for violence pushed Robertson to crime. The killer asked Rachel to show her some dance steps, and then put the victim to sleep with sleeping pills and strangled the telephone cord.

Robertson kept Rachel's body in the apartment (in the closet) for two days, with the telephone cord still wrapped around the dead girl's neck. The body was there on March 2 when Caroline was visited by her father, David Reid, who she called and said she was sick. The door to the bedroom where the body was located was closed. Caroline then wrapped Rachel's body in two rugs (two blankets or rugs were also mentioned in the press) and placed it in a large bag. The bag was never found.

In addition, Robertson's personal diaries were also found.

“The strikingly attractive body of the dancer. Very clean fair skin, hypnotic green eyes, dyed hair of different colors, ”the killer writes about Barber.

And then she reflects on the desire to disfigure her body.

Screenshot: HyperTrailers EU / YouTube

The court sentenced Robertson to 20 years in prison, setting a minimum mandatory sentence of 14,5 years. She was finally released in January 2015, this decision was supported by Rachel's parents - they finally forgave the killer.

The event was reflected in numerous books and articles, but culminated in the release of the film “In Her Skin”, which won national and international awards.

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