TV Guide: Insider’s look at Nine’s Million Dollar Murders

Million Dollar Murders

Exclusive commentary from Nine’s Kieran Pittard and series host Deborah Wallace

In a new series called Million Dollar Murders, Nine is asking viewers to help with some unsolved crimes. Could $1m turn up the heat on a cold case of murder? Viewers can get involved by watching the six episodes on Monday nights on Nine and on 9Now.

Nine’s head of acquisitions Kieran Pittard spoke to Mediaweek about the channel’s new series.

“Crime is certainly a genre that resonates with our viewers across the 9Network and 9Now. For free-to-air it’s important to tell local stories and to complement our multi-night reality programs with different genres. Channel 9 has several programs where we tell local stories, but not usually one story across the hour and Million Dollar Murders provides us with that vehicle.”

The three major FTA broadcasters don’t have a lot of commissions from smaller indie production houses, but Nine now has a track record of success with The Full Box.

“For Channel 9, this program was a natural commission as we have worked with The Full Box for a number of years on Australian Crime Stories. They have a solid track record in this genre and the integrity The Full Box provides in their storytelling is also recognised by the state police departments and this has allowed for fantastic access across the two programs.

“The difference between Million Dollar Murders and Australian Crime Stories is that in Million Dollar Murders each of the investigations is still live. The police have offered a $1 million dollar reward to anyone who can help solve these horrific crimes. That is what sets the show apart from others for me and it provides a great anchor that we can visit in each episode. I’d love to see any of these cases solved from airing this series.”

Nine is also pleased to be working with new on-air talent in this new series, said Pittard.

Million Dollar Murders

Retired Detective Superintendent Deborah Wallace brings credibility as host. She is immensely respected in the policing community but along with her experience, Deborah brings a real sense of empathy in her interviews with family members and loved ones. It really draws you in as she visits the actual sites where these crimes took place.”

See also: Nine’s true crime producers on asking for public help solve Million Dollar Murders

Deborah Wallace reveals why she joined Million Dollar Murders

How I became involved….
Producers Gerri Coy and Bryan Cockerill were very drunk and gave me a call….okay they weren’t drunk perhaps but we discussed their passion for storytelling and true crime and [their company] The Full Box felt a show like Million Dollar Murders was going to be more than just the re-telling a crime story. It’s about achieving outcomes, solving crimes and hopefully bringing justice to these families of victims of crime. I really enjoyed their other series, and I thought this sounded like a great new format/concept and I was excited to be involved.

Police partnerships
We’ve worked collaboratively with Victorian and NSW Police on the cases they felt we may have a chance to solve. We’re hopeful that these cases can be solved once we shine a light on them and announce the $1m reward for information that may lead to a conviction.

Bravery and emotion
What stood out for me while working on this show was the bravery of the families and friends and the victims. They agreed to speak out and reflect on the most horrific event when their lives were changed forever. Also seeing the emotion shown by the original investigators, who still hope for an outcome, to solve these cases.

Revisiting crime scenes
It gives you a real perspective of what the victims may have felt, and their thoughts, in those last moments of their life. It also helps you understand the life-changing impact these senseless murders have had on the victim’s family and friends.

Sharing new information
The aim is to solve these cases and to finally get some justice for these families and the victims. But also, Million Dollar Murders gives you a rare insight into not only how the investigators gather evidence and work through the case, but also the emotions they deal with during an investigation.

Are these cold cases?
Unsolved cases are never cold, they’re always active, and police never give up.
They’re active investigations until they’re solved. Together with the tenacity and determination of detectives, these cases will constantly have a light shining on them and hopefully, a program like this can help solve these cases.

Million Dollar Murders: Episode Guide

“All cases can be solved. They’re never cold and police never give up.”


In the 1990s the Melbourne suburb of St Kilda was a dangerous place.

A number of sex workers were murdered and discarded after being taken from the streets where they worked. One of these women was Amanda Byrnes who was brutally murdered in 1991.

With exclusive access to Police files, detectives and Amanda’s family, Million Dollar Murders follows new lines of inquiry that may help identify Amanda’s killer or killers and Victoria Police make a crucial announcement in the program for the public to help close the case.


In 1991 twenty-year-old Penny Hill had just started a new job as a nanny in the small NSW town of Coolah. Three days later she was bashed and left to die on the side of a country road.

Now, after three decades of police investigations, collecting DNA samples from more than 100 men, two coronial inquests and posting a $1m reward, Million Dollar Murders, NSW police, witnesses and Penny’s mother reveals new and startling information that may aid the public in helping to solve this puzzling case.


Twenty years can pass in the blink of an eye for some, but for Peter and Robyn Stace, they have been hurting every day.

Because every day that goes by is another 24 hours, they don’t have justice for their teenage daughter Lee Ellen Stace, whose murder in 1997 remains unsolved.

On the day the blonde, beach-loving 16-year-old was last seen alive it’s understood she was hoping to hitch-hike home to Brooms Head, NSW, after finishing work at a supermarket, a job she had started two weeks earlier. Million Dollar Murders has discovered new information that indicates Lee knew her killer or killers, and there are people keeping secrets and have told lies, about her murder.

NSW Police, the Stace family and Lee’s friends hope this new information and a $1m reward will finally crack the veil of silence surrounding this case.


Gary Allibon was ambushed during a robbery on his cash-in-transit van in the middle of Sydney’s CBD in 2010.

He was due to retire within eight months when he was fatally shot in the back. He had his hands up, surrendering when he was murdered.

Despite extensive investigations at the time and over the past decade, no one has been charged over Allibon’s murder.

Million Dollar Murders and NSW Police name the main suspect and reveal new information that may help the public bring justice for Gary’s widow Monica.


Kevin Pearce operated a freight distribution business when late one night a fatal bullet from a .308 hunting rifle went through his left arm, shattered against his ribs, and lodged in his spine.

Three colleagues were with him at the time, but they didn’t see the sniper. However, in 1986 the Victorian coroner found Pearce was shot “by or by the arrangement and organisation of a former business partner in William James Matthews.

It was well known the two were feuding and were business rivals.

Coroner Hallenstein ruled that Matthews should stand trial, however the director of Public Prosecutions reviewed the case and decided not to pursue charges.

Now over 35 years on and with exclusive access to police files Million Dollar Murders follows fresh evidence that will encourage people to contact Victoria Police and bring an end to the torment of the Pearce family.


On a cold wintry evening in June 1999 Belinda Williams’ six-year-old daughter was frightened by the dark, so her mum tucked her back into bed and read her to sleep with fairy tales.

When the child woke the next morning, her mother was not on the bed next to her, she was not in the house. Thirty-six-year-old, Belinda Williams was nowhere to be found.

Eleven days after Belinda disappeared, bushwalkers discovered her body, dressed only in a nightshirt, dumped in scrub a short distance from her home in the Victorian country town of Buninyong.

Despite a coronial inquest and an extensive police investigation, Belinda William’s murder remains unsolved. However, in this exclusive investigation, Victoria Police and Million Dollar Murders present new information that Belinda may well have known her killer, or killers and others know information as well. For Belinda’s family, it’s time for those people to come forward, with a $1m reward on offer, for this final piece of the puzzle, to convict the murderer.

Million Dollar Murders

To Top