As a junior reporter for the ABC in the early 1970s, Bob Wurth had covered a litany of Sydney crime stories. Each morning he would call detectives at the Criminal Investigation Branch to learn the names of those unfortunate souls who had become victims the night before.
Yet nothing could quite prepare him for the morning he recognised one of those names.
Lynette White, age 26.
Speaking to Mamamia ahead of tonight’s Australian Story episode about the case, Wurth recalled the moment the Sergeant uttered the name of his friend’s wife, a kind, gentle woman he had come to know well.
“I reeled back and I said, ‘Lynette White of Beach St, Coogee?’ And he said, ‘Yeah, that’s correct, she’s deceased. Stabbed to death by an intruder in her home unit,'” Wurth said.
“That was a great shock for a young journalist… I just couldn’t get it out of my system. It just haunted me for quite a long time.”
The mother of one was just 26 at the time of her death on June 8, 1973.
Home alone with her 11-week old son, she answered a knock at the door. Her killer burst in, threatening her at knife-point to undress in front of him.
The newlywed's clothes were later found in a neatly folded pile. Order amid the chilling chaos her husband, Paul, discovered when he returned from work that evening; the front door ajar, blood spattered throughout the unit within, his wife's lifeless body lying in the doorway of their second bedroom, stabbed multiple times, her throat cut.
Just a metre away, their baby lay tucked snugly in his cot, completely unharmed.
LISTEN: My sister, my killer. The latest episode of Australian True Crime with Meshel Laurie and Emily Webb.
Forty four years later, the man responsible is yet to be caught, and the case remains one of Sydney's most infamous unsolved murders.
There is hope that that may change. A new investigation is currently underway that's taking advantage of recent advances in forensic technology. Just last year investigators returned to the White's former home to recover DNA from blood stains that still lie beneath the carpet.