FRANKSTON serial killer Paul Denyer will remain in jail for life under proposed state government legislation.
Denyer murdered Elizabeth Stevens, Deborah Fream, and Natalie Russell in the surrounding suburbs of Frankston in 1993. He was handed a life sentence with a non-parole period of 30 years, which expired this year.
Denyer, now 51-years-old, had a parole application knocked back by the Adult Parole Board in May. The News understands that on 31 October, the state government will announce that it intends to change the law to keep Denyer in jail until he is approaching death.
Frankston MP Paul Edbrooke has welcomed the move. He said “I have worked closely with the Russell family for years to achieve this robust legislation. I want to extend my thanks and love to the Russell family and friends – Brian, Carmel, Karen, Lisa and Jeanine for their enduring patience and advice.”
“This legislation honors both the advocacy of victims’ families and the legacies of Natalie Russell, Elizabeth Stevens and Debbie Fream by ensuring people who belong in prison, stay in prison,” he said.
Since he became eligible for parole, there have been widespread calls for Denyer to remain locked up. A change.org petition opposing his release was signed more than 50,000 times. An opposition-backed bill to keep Denyer jailed was rejected by the upper house in June (“Plan to keep killer jailed forever fails”, The News, 27/6/23).
The state government’s proposed legislation will also include measures which prevent prisoners convicted of serious crimes from continually reapplying for parole, The News understands.
Denyer was also convicted of the 1993 abduction of Rosza Toth.
The impact of the 1993 crimes are still felt around Frankston today. Elizabeth Stevens was killed at age 18 while walking home from a bus stop. 22-year-old Deborah Fream was killed just days after giving birth to her son. Denyer’s final victim, 17-year-old Natalie Russell, was abducted and murdered while walking home from school. The track she was taken from has since been renamed in her memory.