Melissa Hunt Murder: New Clues Give Hope In Newcastle Cold Case
On ANZAC Day in 1994, Melissa Hunt's lifeless body was found dumped in a remote dam near Newcastle. Her killer was never found.
Despite her death being classified as a cold case, Hunt's brother Peter Hallett and sister Jenny Marshman are making a spirited push for the murder to be solved.
Twenty-five years ago, Hunt's body was found in the Burrumjim Dam weighed down by rocks, with a post-mortem revealing she died from a fractured skull.
Hunt, 22, had been married for just six weeks to Scott Hunt, who sat down with The Sunday Project this week for his first ever interview.
Hunt was adopted by the Hallett family at seven weeks old and Marshman told The Sunday Project she was always "very self-conscious" of it.
"Kids started to say things like, well, they aren’t your real parents," Marshman said.
Hunt rebelled as a teenager, and after disappearing for a month at the end of Year 10, came home pregnant with her first child.
She then distanced herself even further, giving birth to a second child, developing a drug habit and becoming a sex worker.
At the end of 1993, she met Scott Hunt. They moved in together a week after they started dating and were married two months later.
Six weeks after tying the knot, the couple had an argument. She left, spent one night at a bus stop and another at a friend’s house, then returned to pack her bags and leave.
The next day Hart visited her ex-boyfriend, Matthew Henderson, and when she left his home at 1am on April 18, 1994, it was the last she was seen alive.
Henderson told police she left his house because he ‘refused to cuddle her’.
A coroner's inquest was later held with Scott Hunt and Matthew Henderson both questioned, but neither were arrested or charged with the murder.
A recent search of the Burrumjim Dam has uncovered new clues and while police have kept them under wraps, they are yet to find the murder weapon.
NSW Police have said the case, which was referred to the Unsolved Homicide Unit in 1998, is now "set to undergo a formal review in coming months".
In his first ever interview, Scott Hunt spoke to The Sunday Project about what his wife Melissa was like, their short-lived relationship and her death at 22.
"She was a troubled young woman trying to make a go of it, and someone did a horrific thing to her," Peter Hallett said.
If you believe you have information on this case, please call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.
Catch the full interview with Scott Hunt on The Sunday Project, Sunday 6.30pm.