Chris Dawson has been committed to stand trial over the alleged murder of his wife Lynette Dawson who vanished from the couple’s Bayview home more than 37 years ago.
According to 7News, Dawson will return to court in April before a six-week trial later in the year.
The decision comes at the end of a four-day committal hearing, which heard evidence from four witnesses who all claim to have seen Lyn alive within the first two years after she was reported missing.
One of the witnesses, a former neighbour of the Dawsons, told Downing Centre Local Court that he had seen Lyn working as a nurse at the former Rockcastle Hospital in 1984. While Chris Dawson’s brother-in-law Ross Hutcheon told the hearing that he had laid eyes on Lynette sitting at a bus stop three to six months after she vanished.
Former high school teacher Dawson, 71, formally entered a plea of not guilty at Downing Centre Local Court in June last year, six months after he was charged with murdering his wife, with whom he shares two daughters.
The disappearance of mother-of-two Lynette Dawson attracted widespread attention in 2018 after The Australian journalist Hedley Thomas made the cold case the focus of his podcast The Teacher’s Pet, which was listened to by millions of people worldwide.
Following the success of the true crime podcast, with a renewed public interest in the case, police launched a new forensic search at the former home of the Dawson family in Bayview in September 2018. However the search of the $2.4 million property turned up nothing of interest.
Lynette has not been seen since January 9, 1982, when the 33-year-old mother went missing from the home she shared with Chris and their two young daughters, with her husband claiming at the time that she had said she needed some time away. Just a few days later, he moved his schoolgirl lover into the family home.
Dawson didn’t inform police that his wife was missing for nearly six weeks.