true crime

Marguerite Edwards said one night, "our life is too perfect." The next day, she was murdered.

Just one day after finding his wife murdered in their bedroom, Iain Edwards returned home.

When he opened the door and walked inside he was struck by how cold it felt.

In a moving episode of No Filter, Iain explained that entering his family home was terrifying. It was like walking into a horror movie.

Step by step he followed the trail of blood around his two story house in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, which he shared with his beautiful wife Marguerite and their three daughters  – who were only 10, 12, and 14. The trail stopped in his bedroom.

He’d already made this journey the night before, when he discovered his wife’s body. But he was scared to go back in.

“I was really angry because the bedroom was a place of love and here’s her death in the middle of it,” he told No Filter.

When he walked inside there was no sign of a confrontation. The police had come and gone after finishing their investigations – but there was still blood left on the floor where his wife once lay. All Iain could see in his mind’s eye was her lifeless body. He’d had to check her pulse around the same time the night before.

“I get hit with something like a migraine that just explodes in my head. I can’t cope and fall onto the floor, I think I am dying,” Iain explains of that moment.

“It’s a migraine times 10… it was like electric currents going through my head.”

Listen: Mia Freedman interviews Iain Edwards on No Filter. Post continues after audio. 

Without thinking too much about it, Iain turned to the bed and adopted a traditional pose for prayer – elbows propped up on the edge of the mattress.

“I start to pray to God and then I think I am not being humble enough. So I turn around and put my head on the floor. At that point I have this feeling inside me that I am absolutely beaten,” said Iain.

“I say out loud, ‘God I am beaten. I can’t cope with this’. It was an admission from my heart,” he told No Filter.

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Marguerite and Iain in April, 1989. Image supplied.
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Then, something incredible happened.

"This feeling of warmth starts to pass through me and goes through my body and radiates out. Suddenly I don't feel cold. The house was cold, it was mid-winter, there were no heaters on and my body would have been cold from the state of shock, and I am now feeling this warmth. As I get warmer and warmer I feel better and better, in the sense that I am no longer beaten. The room no longer looks negative, it looks normal. And I feel normal. The pain has stopped, I feel like I am plugged into 2000 volts," said Iain.

Iain explains that it was like the "lights came on in the house" and the very next day, he moved his three daughters back into the home their mother had died in. They all slept in the master bedroom that night.

As a family, they confronted the room and what they thought might have happened in there and they faced their fears. As Iain describes, they "dived into the middle of it". In doing so they managed to break all negative thoughts they had with the place their mum died.

"Our life is too perfect."

It was the 1st of August, 1989 and Marguerite and Iain had finished up with dinner and put the kids to bed. They were talking about the day's happenings, as they often did.

An article in the local paper - the Wentworth Courier - had caught Marguerite's eye. It was about a terrifying local crime. Marguerite turned to her husband of 20 years and said; "nothing has ever happened to us, our life is too perfect."

Iain thought it was an odd thing to say, but didn't think much more than that.

The next day Iain went off to work at his orthodontic surgery, and Marguerite dropped the kids to school before heading to an aerobics class.

Everything in the Edwards family was very normal that morning. But at 6pm, Iain got a panicked phone call from his neighbour. Marguerite hadn't picked up the kids, so she had brought them home herself. When they got back to the house the door was open and a chair was upended.

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Marguerite and Iain's three daughters, Skye, Camilla and Brianna in April, 1989. Image supplied.
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Iain raced to his car, but he already knew what he was driving home to. He knew his wife was dead.

Six months earlier he'd had a premonition while jogging. He'd imagined his wife's death, a court case and a man being put in jail for the rest of his life.

"I kept jogging and thinking about this scenario, it was a bit like a play, or an act," he explained on No Filter.

At the time he thought it was just one of those things you think about - when you think about what would happen if someone you love dies and what that would mean for you.

But six months later, when Iain got that phone call, he already knew.

"She's dead, she's dead, she's dead," he thought to himself the whole drive home.

When he got home without knowing what had happened, he made a beeline for their bedroom. He knew to go there first.

After finding his beloved wife dead in his bedroom, Iain walked next door to find his three young daughters.

"This is the worst thing I'll ever have to tell you in my life, your mother is dead," he told them. All three screamed, and then they stopped.

Years later, his daughters would tell him that they all noticed a light in their father's eyes. They were blazing with light, and they were crystal clear. A spiritual person Iain met years later told him that he 'transmitted something to them' in that moment.

Iain doesn't know if that's true. But he does know that his girls didn't act like children whose mother had been murdered - they didn't go off the rails or have devastating futures. They all went on to get degrees, careers, husbands and families.

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Iain and Marguerite with their daughters Brianna, Skye and Camilla in Diamond Head, Hawaii, in July, 1989. Image supplied.
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It probably has something to do with how Iain helped them through their grief in those early days and months.

He made them continue on with their lives as normal. And the day after they moved back into the family home, he sent them off to school.

"There was no point just hanging around," he told Mia Freedman. "We sat in the driveway and they were all crying, and I said you can keep crying, but we're still going in [to school]. It'll be worse tomorrow if we don't go. They all took a deep breath and went in. Looking back, I don't know how they did it, but they did."

Later that week, Iain asked if he could speak to the school and he told the hundreds of high school students, "We really need your help - we can't do this alone. Don't be afraid of us, please don't run away."

They didn't. The community rallied, and the family had food on their doorstep for months.

Looking back, Iain thinks he relied on his knowledge of sports psychology as a way to handle the grief of his family.

"In the team you can't blame someone otherwise the teamwork breaks down. You have to focus simply on what you have to do next. In sport, you aren't thinking of the score, you're thinking about getting the ball back," said Iain.

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Brianna, Iain, Camilla and Skye in 2011. Image supplied.

In his scenario, they weren't thinking about the 'who' or the 'why' - they were focusing on 'what do to next.'

The man responsible.

Police had no leads, and no tangible evidence. As Iain explained, it was like she was "struck by lightning and died." They had absolutely no idea who killed her.

Marguerite had been struck in the head numerous times and strangled with one of Iain's neckties. She'd also been gagged.

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Two witnesses had heard screams from the house at around 1:30pm. But the case quickly went cold with no strong leads.

Iain found solace during that time in meditation.

"I started with psychologists, doctors, tarot card readers. I went everywhere and anywhere to find someone to provide a solution to suffering," he told No Filter.

Mediation taught Iain how to feel more detached, less shattered, calmer and more grounded.

"I started to feel dramatically different within weeks. That then tied in with this pursuit of God. The epiphany experience was saying to me, 'there's something here that you never were aware of'," he said.

Finally, in 1991, police had a breakthrough.

Christopher Anthony Lorenzo, 35, was in Long Bay Jail in Sydney waiting to be sentenced for armed robbery charges. The South African born tradie took police up on an offer that had been announced by the Premier at the time; a prisoner informant scheme.

He told them he knew who'd killed the "dentist's wife in Woollahra." He wanted a reduced sentence and a different, kinder jail in which to do his time, so he wrote a 17 page hand-written statement detailing everything he knew about Marguerite's murder.

He said he'd been at a local pub and had lent his car to a mate, who returned the vehicle with blood in it. His friend told him he'd broken into a house but there was a woman there who started screaming so he had to silence her. He said his mate asked him to drown the gun he'd left in the car, and while cleaning up his vehicle, Lorenzo said he found a gold bracelet under one of the seats.

He produced both items as evidence to the police and the bracelet was confirmed as being one that was custom made for Marguerite. But when police had the statement looked over by police intelligence services, their interpretation was clear: "the person who wrote this was either there or did it".

Eventually they managed to match Lorenzo's blood to the scene and also caught him on tape bragging to his cellmate about the crime. Christopher Lorenzo was eventually, after an eight week trial, found guilty of Marguerite's murder.

A year prior to the murder, he'd been hired as part of renovations the Edwards' were doing on their family home. He'd been tiling the roof, and spent a few days at the property. He'd noticed how well off the family was, and had decided to go back and steal from them. He broke in using a copied key he'd made at the time.

Marguerite came home while he was inside and fearing she'd recognise him from the year before - he killed her.

On the 26th of November 1993, Christopher Lorenzo was sentenced to 22 years and six months, with a non parole period of 17 years. The charges were however added onto previous charges and didn't start until 1996. That pushed his possible release date even further back, to 2013.

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Camilla, Brianna, Iain and Skye in November, 1993. Image supplied.

Lorenzo died in prison in 2011 from leukaemia aged 54.

Team Edwards.

Iain and his girls took time off to be at their mother's trial.

Iain recalls his girls singing Every Breath You Take by The Police about Lorenzo during the proceedings.

He never admitted to the murder, but Iain doesn't hate him.

As he told No Filter, "hating and putting down other people is a negative experience. It's also victimisation."

Instead, Iain is focusing on the good that came out of his wife's murder - and that is the "spiritual goodness" he's been able to find in the years since.

He's still in the same house. He calls it a "hotel for the family" who come and go despite having their own lives and families now.

In the early years, he had two speeds. This epiphany type feeling that plugged him into a powerful source of energy that empowered him, and the pain. A horrendous emotional suffering that would wrack his body with pain and threaten to sink his life.

But the Edwards never used Marguerite's death as an excuse. Because that would make them victims, and they weren't going to be victims.

Iain coached his girls and himself through grief as though he was the head coach of a sporting team: focusing on the play by play and not the scoreboard.

The Edwards have celebrated so much happiness and success in the 30 years since Marguerite died, and they remain a team.

A team lead by Iain.

Here's the full episode if you'd like a listen. Post continues after podcast. 

Featured image via Chrysalis by Benjamin Matthews.

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