Graham Stafford voices doubts
GRAHAM Stafford, the man falsely accused of murdering Goodna schoolgirl Leanne Holland, said he had “reservations” about the current investigation by police into the conduct of the original case.
Mr Stafford, 47, of Mooloolaba, served 15 years in prison for the murder in 1991 of 12-year-old Leanne, who was the sister of his then-girlfriend.
Leanne's severely battered body was found in bushland near her home three days after she went missing.
Mr Stafford's murder conviction was quashed in December last year after three appeals.
On Tuesday police began forensic testing at the home where Mr Stafford and Leanne lived, focusing on the bathroom.
Speaking exclusively to the Daily, Mr Stafford said it had been established during the appeal process that Leanne could not have been murdered in the bathroom, where trace amounts of blood were found during the initial investigation.
“In a way, I feel police should be looking for new evidence,” Mr Stafford said.
“It would also be interesting to know whether police have interviewed the three persons of interest identified in Graeme Crowley's investigation.
“I am hopeful of a full and comprehensive investigation, although I do have my reservations.
“I just want the person who killed Leanne to be brought to justice.”
Mr Stafford has not been approached by investigators to give evidence.
Graeme Crowley, a private investigator from Brisbane, co-authored the book Who Killed Leanne Holland? and was instrumental in bringing Mr Stafford's miscarriage of justice into the public arena.
He said he was not concerned that police were investigating Leanne's home and he was “happy for police to be doing their job”.
“They've got to cover all their bases and do whatever they can to get this murder solved,” Mr Crowley said.
“Police told me everything about the initial investigation was up for review and I am keen for that to happen.”
Ross Barnett, the assistant commissioner for the State Crime Operations Command, said officers were at the house to ensure nothing was missed in the initial investigation.
He said there had been big advances in forensic technology and police wanted to ensure they had all the evidence available.
“There were certain forensic samples recovered in that area ... we just want to go back and make sure nothing has been missed,” Mr Barnett told ABC Radio.
“We want to make sure that if there is any additional evidence that wasn't uncovered at the time that we capture that.”
Mr Barnett said the Holland family was supportive of the new effort, which he described as “a complete re-audit of the work done forensically at the scene”.
“They are certainly aware of the scope of what we are doing and they are very supportive of the police effort,” Mr Barnett said.
Asked if any new evidence had sparked the operation, he said no.
Mr Barnett said a team of three experienced investigators were involved in the operation.
They are being overseen by a senior New South Wales detective inspector brought in to head the review, which will take some months.