Jill Meagher was a 29 year old Irish woman living in Melbourne with her husband, Tom. She was a bright, funny, loving young woman, who worked for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. On the 21st of September 2012, Jill went to a bar on Sydney Road in Brunswick with some colleagues. She left around 1:30am, to walk the few blocks back to her home and her husband.
She never made it home. When her husband awoke to find her missing, he immediately contacted the police.
What followed was a fast and efficient investigation, helped along by the discovery of CCTV footage featuring Jill and a man in a blue sweatshirt on Sydney Road. The man in the blue sweatshirt was quickly identified as Adrian Ernest Bayley, a man who was on parole after serving time for a series of rapes.
In this episode, we discuss Adrian Ernest Bayley’s shocking criminal history, the impact that Jill’s death has had on the Australian public, and also, Ellen cries. A lot.
Jill Meagher was a young woman with her whole life ahead of her. The impact her violent and brutal murder had on her family and her husband Tom cannot be overstated. This case is one of the most well-known in Australia, and it inspired a wave of grief and anger in the Australian public. Thousands of people took to the streets to Reclaim the Night after Jill's murder. Jill's death demonstrated once again to Australian women that even if you do everything right, even if you're only a few blocks away from your house, even if you're talking to someone on the phone, you aren't safe. The community was enraged that someone with such a disturbing and violent criminal past could be released from prison, especially considering the miniscule sentence Bayley was served with for his past crimes.
Jill’s husband Tom continues to speak out about violence against women and toxic masculinity. You can read his amazing article, The Danger of the Monster Myth, on the White Ribbon Ireland’s blog here https://whiteribbonblog.com/2014/04/17/the-danger-of-the-monster-myth/
Youcan watch the documentary Conviction: The Jill Meagher Story on Netflix here https://www.netflix.com/title/80193756
Read Tom Meagher’s letter to Jill here https://www.news.com.au/lifestyle/real-life/i-carry-the-scars-of-jills-death-because-thats-how-i-remember-to-carry-her-light-inside-me/news-story/1dd1d132143a65a33a7387cbae153256
The victim impact statements from the trial can be found here if you’re keen for a weep https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/jill-meagher-murder-the-victim-impact-statements-20130612-2o3ih.html
To read more about Adrian Ernest Bayley, go here https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/timeline-the-dark-past-of-adrian-bayley-20150320-1m3sda.html