THE man accused of murdering Karlie Pearce-Stevenson was behind the wheel of a car that rolled in Outback South Australia, leaving his girlfriend paralysed and killing her two children.
The crash happened about 55km north of Marla just three months before Daniel Holdom — who has also gone by the names Daniel Bishop and Daniel Marshall — allegedly murdered Ms Pearce-Stevenson in the Belanglo State Forest in NSW.
Holdom’s then girlfriend, Hazel Passmore, was left wheelchair-bound and her two children, aged nine and six, were killed in the crash.
Ms Passmore now lives at Davoren Park in Adelaide’s northern suburbs. She was questioned last week by detectives investigating the murders of Karlie and her two-year-old daughter Khandalyce, whose body was found in a suitcase beside a highway near Wynarka in SA.
It is understood Ms Passmore has been questioned over identity theft and the use of Ms Pearce-Stevenson’s phone and bank card in the years following the murder.
Early today, Mrs Passmore left her home without comment, accompanied by her partner and a little boy, believed to be her son.
She refused to tell The Advertiser how she knew the dead mother and daughter.
Her partner, who loaded her wheelchair in the car, also would not comment.
She also refused to say where she was driving to before speeding off in a Holden station wagon.
Major Crime detectives are focussing on how Ms Pearce-Stevenson’s bank account was repeatedly raided in the years after her death as fraudsters who impersonated her to welfare authorities and in phone calls to her family stole over $90,000.
Holdom’s 4WD rolled on the Stuart Highway about 10pm on Wednesday, September 15, 2008.
Two of Ms Passmore’s children were killed and the survivors were flown to Alice Springs Hospital.
Holdom, 41, a former acquaintance of Ms Pearce-Stevenson faced a NSW court charged with her murder on Thursday morning.
It is understood a police trace has allegedly placed Holdom’s mobile phone in Belanglo at the time Ms Pearce-Stevenson was allegedly killed.
Holdom was taken into custody by homicide detectives at 3.45pm (SA time) on Wednesday.
He was charged with one count of murder several hours later relating to the death of Ms Pearce-Stevenson — but has not been charged over the murder of Khandalyce.
Holdom was refused bail and appeared by video link in the Maitland Local Court, in the Hunter Valley, on Thursday morning.
He will appear again in the Central Local Court in Sydney on November 12.
Police are investigating whether Holdom played any role in Khandalyce’s death, but it is understood he is not co-operating and has refused to be interviewed.
He had formerly lived at a caravan park on the NSW Central Coast, according to his charge sheet.
It comes after police revealed on Tuesday how they believed those responsible for the dual murders assumed Ms Pearce-Stevenson’s identity to steal more than $90,000 from her bank account.
They said a woman in a wheelchair had visited a credit union and posed as Ms Pearce-Stevenson to update her records.
In a short press conference in Sydney on Thursday morning, NSW Homicide Squad boss Det Supt Mick Willing said Khandalyce was kept alive for some time after her murder.
“We will allege Karlie was murdered between the 14th and the 15th of December, 2008,” he said.
“We believe that Khandalyce was murdered at some point after Karlie and we are trying to
TIMELINE OF MURDER AND FRAUD
2006: Khandalyce Kiara Pearce born in Alice Springs to single mother Karlie Jade Pearce-Stevenson.
2008: Ms Pearce-Stevenson leaves family in Alice Springs and starts travelling around Australia with her young daughter.
Nov. 2008: The last photos of Ms Pearce-Stevenson and Khandalyce were taken at Marion Shopping Centre, Khandalyce wearing a pink dress. Last known sighting was driving on the Stuart Highway near Coober Pedy.
Sept. 2009: Following less and less contact, her mother files a missing persons report with NT police. The report is closed a week later. It was believed Ms Pearce-Stevenson was safe, but did not want contact.
Aug. 2010: The remains of a young woman were found by a group of trail bike riders in Belanglo State Forest in NSW. The woman’s time of death is determined to have been anywhere from six months to 10 years prior. A distinctive T-shirt with Angelic motif found with the remains prompts the victim to be known as ‘Angel’.
Dec. 2011: Her remains are still unidentified and a computer-generated image of the face is released.
July 2015: The skeletal remains of a child are found dumped in a Lanza suitcase alongside the Karoonda Highway, near Wynarka, on July 14. Several items of clothing and a distinctive handmade quilt are found. Detectives determine the child met a violent death aged 2 ½ to 4 and was killed up to seven years earlier at another location. DNA testing fails to yield her identity.
Aug-Sept. 2015: Police doorknock hundreds of properties in the Murray Mallee and receive more than 1000 Crime Stoppers calls. Clothing and quilt a key focus. Data-matching software identifies 6300 possible victims.
Oct. 8, 2015: One caller nominates Khandalyce as possibly being the little girl in the suitcase. Investigators then find a witness who had seen Khandalyce and her mother at Marion Shopping Centre in November 2008. She had photographed Khandalyce in a pink dress that was identical to that found in the suitcase. Police provided with photos of Khandalyce in a stroller with the handmade quilt that was also found in the suitcase.
Oct. 2015: A blood sample from Khandalyce’s medical records matches the DNA profile taken from the remains in the suitcase. Blood samples from Ms Pearce-Stevenson’s medical records is used for a DNA profile. Police confirm they match Belanglo remains.
October 27: SA Police reveal Karlie’s identity was stolen after her death and used to steal more than $90,000 — welfare benefits, wages and money from her family — from Ms Pearce-Stevenson’s account. The fraudsters impersonated Ms Pearce-Stevenson to authorities and her family members in brief phone calls.
October 28: A 41-year-old man is taken into police custody at Cessnock, NSW, for allegedly murdering Ms Pearce-Stevenson. He was charged with the murder late on Wednesday night.
October 29: Daniel Holdom appears in court charged with Karlie’s murder and is denied bail. It is revealed he was in a fatal car crash in SA’s Far North three months before Karlie’s murder that killed his girlfriend’s two children and left her in a wheelchair.