| Janelle Patton|
| March 31, 2002, Norfolk Island|Janelle Patton Wikipedia
Janelle Patton was a 29-year-old Sydney woman who was murdered on Norfolk Island on 31 March 2002. The case made national headlines in Australia and New Zealand, as she was the first person to be murdered on Norfolk Island since 1893.
Patton went to Norfolk Island seeking a new beginning following a number of failed relationships in her homeland of Australia. However, it was said that she experienced several further unhappy relationships whilst living on the island. Her parents arrived from Australia for a visit on the day before her murder. Patton was last seen taking on her morning walk along a coastal track near her home. Her parents became concerned when she failed to appear for a lunch appointment and contacted the police. Soon after, a body matching their daughter's description was discovered by two tourists from New Zealand. The body was found at the Cockpit Waterfall Reserve at opposite end of the island from where she was last seen, wrapped in a large black plastic sheet. The body was formally identified by Patton's landlady. Janelle Patton had 64 stab wounds, a fractured skull, broken pelvis and broken ankle. She had died from a stab wound to the chest that punctured her lung.
The investigation into Patton's murder was protracted and difficult. Eventually, on 1 February 2006, Glenn Peter Charles McNeill, a 28-year-old chef from New Zealand, was arrested for her murder near the city of Nelson, on the South Island of New Zealand, after being identified by an Australian Federal Police investigation. He was subsequently extradited to Norfolk Island and formally charged with the crime.
At the Norfolk Island Court of Petty Sessions McNeill claimed that he had accidentally hit Patton with his car, a statement he later retracted. He was transferred to Silverwater Correctional Centre in Sydney.
On 1 February 2007, McNeill formally went on trial for the murder. A press blackout was imposed by the judge, Justice Mark Weinberg, to prevent any dilution of the limited potential jury pool. On 1 March 2007, McNeill told the Supreme Court, "I did not kill Janelle Patton", "I did not abduct her" and "I did not see Janelle Patton that day". He said he could not recall what he had told police earlier, but "would have admitted to anything" due to his mental health problems. The trial ended on 9 March 2007 when the 11-person jury returned a guilty verdict.
On 25 July 2007, McNeill was sentenced to 24 years in prison by Justice Weinberg (acting as Norfolk Island's chief justice) in the Federal Court in Sydney.