This article was first published on October 16 2018, and was updated on October 6 2019 following the arrest of John Bowie.
— With AAP.
Almost four decades after his wife Roxlyn disappeared, John Bowie will face a Sydney court charged with her murder.
The 69-year-old – due to appear at Parramatta Bail Court on Sunday – denies killing Roxlyn, who vanished from home in the far north NSW town of Walgett on June 5, 1982.
Her body has never been found.
“I don’t even know if she’s dead or not,” Bowie told reporters on Saturday as detectives escorted him through Sydney Airport en route to Surry Hills Police Station.
Bowie was charged with murder on Saturday at Surry Hills, having been arrested at Queensland’s Woodford Correctional Centre on Friday.
A coroner in 2014 found she was dead but couldn’t determine the cause of death.
Police admit their circumstantial case will be challenging to prove without Ms Bowie’s body.
“It’s happened before, we know the road ahead will be challenging,” Detective Superintendent Danny Doherty told reporters on Saturday.
“We’ll have our day in court and hopefully get some justice for Roxlyn and her family.”
He wouldn’t reveal what police allege was the motive for murder.
“That… will come out and play out in court,” the detective said.
New interviews with witnesses and technical advances in uncovering forensic evidence helped progress the case.
Two separate searches in Walgett in the past year revealed personal items, including a silver ring with the letter “R” and black and gold packaging for a Swann-Morton surgical blade.
A $1 million for information leading to the discovery of Ms Bowie’s body remains in place.
What we know about the disappearance of Roxlyn Bowie
Brenda Boyd remembers her mother kissing her goodnight for the very last time.
That was 37 years ago on the night of Saturday, June 5 1982. Her mother Roxlyn Bowie, 31, then vanished from the family’s home in the New South Wales town of Walgett, leaving behind her husband John Bowie, six-year-old Brenda and her son Warren, who was just a week away from his second birthday. She hasn’t been seen since.
Mrs Bowie was described as being of Caucasian appearance, 167cm tall, of a slim build, with brown hair and hazel eyes. She regularly wore reading glasses.
The case is full of mystery – it is still unknown what happened to Roxlyn all those years ago. Speaking to A Current Affair, Brenda said nearly four decades on, she still needs closure.