Who Am I? De-anonymising victims in high-profile, serious violent crimes

Spencer von Einem.  Ivan Milat.  Martin Bryant.  Names we all know.  But what about their victims?

This event brings together criminal psychologist and author Tim Watson-Munro, ex-NSW police detective and author Duncan McNab, and criminologist, author and television presenter Dr Xanthé Mallett to unpick our fascination with the offenders of violent serial crimes, focusing on the subsequent anonymisation of the victims.

The loss of victims’ identities to the offender in the discussion around serious, high-profile events – think of the ‘Belanglo Seven’ or ‘Backpacker Victims’, Ivan Milat’s victims – is not only disrespectful, but speaks a broader issue of the press and public almost hero-worshipping our most violent criminals, who sometimes use their crimes to gain notoriety and fame.

This issue has come to the fore recently following the Christchurch Mosque shootings, when 51 people were murdered and NZ’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern refuse to name the alleged perpetrator, who live-streamed the attacks to social networking sites.

The panel will discuss the changing nature of the rhetoric around high-profile violent crimes, and why it is time to have victim-centred conversations rather than focusing on the violent offenders.  Questions and comments will be welcome from the audience.

Event cost: Voluntary donation to charity ‘Impact’, which works with women who are victims of domestic abuse

The event will be live-streamed via a number of social media platforms. The event is being arranged by the University of Newcastle’s Criminology and Criminal Justice Society, and is supported by the School of Humanities and Social Sciences UoN and The Crime and Governance Thematic Group of The Australian Sociological Association.


The Blind Monk, Hamilton

76 Beaumont St Hamilton, NSW, 2304

02 4023 5290




Event Details