Tracing Anita Cobby’s footsteps changed top cop
Playing an important role in the search for the murderers of Anita Cobby convinced Deb Wallace she wanted to spend her police career as a detective catching killers.
Cobby was brutally murdered after being kidnapped and repeatedly raped while walking to her Blacktown home in 1986 in a crime that shocked Australia.
Five men were eventually convicted of the horrific crime.
Wallace explained her role in the investigation to Gary Jubelin in his latest episode of the hit podcast I Catch Killers.
EXCLUSIVE: As a subscriber you have early access to Season 2 of I Catch Killers with Gary Jubelin. Immediately below are Parts 1 and 2 of his interview with Deb Wallace.
Part 1 (above): In the early part of her career Deb Wallace played a key role into the Anita Cobby murder investigation before she developed her unique policing method on the streets of Cabramatta where she took on the dangerous 5T gang.
Part 2 (above) As the head of Strike Force Raptor Deb Wallace has left a lasting legacy on the streets of Sydney by bringing down scores of Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs. This is how she did it.
As a young, uniformed officer Wallace was approached to reenact Cobby's journey home to help keep the case in the media while police hunted the suspects.
She played the role for the media, replicating the same journey that Cobby took that guaranteed it futher coverage.
But it was a moment after the media left, and while still dressed as Cobby at the spot where she was taken, that still haunts Wallace.
"(One of the lead investigators) Graham Rosetta said to the media, 'You can't be part of this now. We need to do police work,'" Wallace recalled.
"And Graham said: 'I want you to keep walking the route and we're going to stay back and we're just going to just watch. We just want to get a feel for this. When you get to this point, I want you to stop.'"
"And I stand there. And the reason was that this was where the witness had heard a scream or seen a car. And while I was standing there, while they were, no doubt, comparing their notes and writing notes, a car came down the opposite direction,
I CATCH KILLERS PODCAST
Episode 1: Haunted by fatal shot - Police sniper Brett Pennell
Episode 2: World's post in-demand policeman - Former top cop Nick Kaldas
Episode 3: Hardcore cop, novelist and Page 3 model - Karen Davis
Episode 4: Mysterious death of soldier Jake Kovco - Wayne Hayes
"It didn't do a U-turn like they did. But as the car passed me, because it was so quiet, really eerily quiet, and the lighting would have been exactly the same. I remember thinking that car would have passed her. (Anita) would've thought nothing of it. A few moments later that car would have pulled up. She maybe thought (the occupant) was asking directions. And however, when the door opened, in a few short hours, her life would be over. And that's when the nightmare began. And the terror."
Originally published as Tracing Anita Cobby's footsteps changed top cop