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Could the Wanda Beach Murders finally be SOLVED?

A paedophile who abused his own daughter and sister may have confessed to the Wanda Beach murders seven years after two schoolgirls were found partially buried at the beach.

Christine Sharrock and Marianne Schmidt’s bodies were discovered in the sand, near Cronulla in Sydney’s south, on January 12, 1965.

The best friends and neighbours, both aged 15, had been at the beach the day earlier with Marianne’s younger siblings, Peter, Trixie, Wolfgang and Norbert.

It was a gusty day so the group sought shelter in sand hills. The schoolgirls then wandered away from the younger children and were not seen again.  

Christine Sharrock (left) and Marianne Schmidt (right) were found dead buried in the sand, near Cronulla in Sydney's south, on January 12, 1965

Christine Sharrock (left) and Marianne Schmidt (right) were found dead buried in the sand, near Cronulla in Sydney’s south, on January 12, 1965

Marianne’s siblings eventually returned home without the teenagers. The alarm was raised when the schoolgirls failed to catch the train home to West Ryde later that evening. 

In 1972 – seven years after the teenagers were bashed, stabbed and sexually assaulted – a young man allegedly confessed to the crime, The Australian reported. 

‘I did that,’ he told his then-girlfriend. 

The alleged confession came to light years later when the man was being investigated for sexually abusing his daughter. 

The victim, now aged in her 40s, told police in 2016 she had been subject to abuse at the hands of her father from four until 11.

The victim’s mother revealed to police her former husband claimed he was the Wanda Beach murderer when the couple first started dating.

Historic footage shoes detectives searching the sand for their investigation into the Wanda murders

Historic footage shoes detectives searching the sand for their investigation into the Wanda murders

‘While we were sitting in his car, (he) turned to me and out of the blue asked me if I remembered the Wanda Beach murders … then said quite calmly words to the ­effect of ‘I did that’,’ she told police. 

The woman told police she felt ‘startled’ but thought he was making a joke. She responded with something like ‘don’t be silly, you did not’.   

‘(He) did not respond straight away but after looking at me and obviously seeing the startled ­expression on my face said something similar to ”Nah I didn’t. I’m only kidding”,’ she told police.

The woman also advised officers she believed her former husband is ‘capable of anything’. 

The man is now serving an eight year prison sentence for the sexual abuse of his daughter. The former car salesman was convicted in 2018. 

The man’s younger sister was one of two other women who also told police they were sexually abused by him as a child.

The grave for teenager Christine Mary Sharrock is seen after her horrific death

The grave for teenager Christine Mary Sharrock is seen after her horrific death

Police have reportedly been advised the convicted sex abuser went to the same school as Marianne – Marsden High School – and lived locally.  

It’s understood he enjoyed surfing as a teenager and frequently visited Sydney beaches including Cronulla.

The man cannot be named to protect the identity of his daughter, 

Marianne’s brother Hans Schmidt said the revelation should lead to further investigations.  

‘Anything that would bring closure to the whole case would obviously be of great interest to the family,’ Mr Schmidt said.

He said his brother Wolfgang remembered seeing a ‘blond surfer guy’ on the day of the teenager’s murders.

NSW police declined to comment on the confession allegations when contacted by The Australian, adding that Homicide Squad detectives continue to appeal for public information. 

Known as the ‘Wanda murders’, the case is the oldest under review by the NSW unsolved homicide unit. 

Known as the 'Wanda murders', the case is the oldest under review by the NSW unsolved homicide unit

Known as the ‘Wanda murders’, the case is the oldest under review by the NSW unsolved homicide unit

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