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The 23-year-old court clerk, the 68-year-old magistrate who became her fiancé – and the tragedy that followed

This was published 5 months ago

Ashleigh Petrie’s engagement sparked front-page news.

Her tragic death only weeks later left her loved ones shattered – and searching for clues as to how and why her life unravelled.

  • Melissa Fyfe
  • The Sydney Morning Herald

It’s just before 1am, an odd time to be walking dogs.

But Daniel Macklin has just clocked off from a forklift-driving shift in Bairnsdale, in eastern Victoria.

Now, early on this Monday morning in October 2019, the 33-year-old has driven to Shaving Point, a picnic area in nearby Metung, to give Jasper and Kiro a run and quick sausages cooked up on the public barbecue.

Macklin loads the dogs into the back of his brand-new, $60,000 Toyota RAV4 (“lovely car, great car”), into…

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