The family of murdered Clunes nurse Nina Nicholson believe leaps towards justice can be achieved this year.
Campaigning for justice for Nina - who was 22 when she was murdered on the back porch of her home in September 1991 - has been a focus for her second cousin Alice Mitchell, who has been on a mission to raise awareness of the case during the past several months.
On behalf of Nina's aging parents Ann and Spike Jones, Ms Mitchell has gone to great lengths to create a renewed awareness of the almost 30-year-old cold case within the community.
While Ms Mitchell spoke with dozens of people to research, record and air her own podcast Clunes Cluedo as part of her Justice For Nina campaign, she was also interviewed for an episode about Nina on the Australian True Crime podcast.
The episode on the popular podcast is being heard on air waves across the nation and is continuing to create renewed traction around the case.
Ms Mitchell said that she is currently reflecting and absorbing all of the feedback she has received following the past few months of campaigning before she continues with other plans. In 2020, she hopes for leaps made towards justice finally being served for Nina - a young life taken too soon.
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"The tail end of 2019 was for traction and 2020 is for action. We have the support of the community behind us who are also demanding answers and accountability," she said.
In an era in which women are continuing to demand equality and are refusing to stand for violence, Ms Mitchell believes the time is right to continue to push for justice for Nina, who was most likely silenced by a male.
I am continuing with this campaign as long as I can humanly do so. Nina was forgotten for too long and I see it as my duty, both as a family member and as a woman, that she has her voice heard and legacy remembered.Alice Mitchell
"It resonates with the community and the more we hear about it, the more people are outraged.
"People who are outraged use their voices and that is why the trigger of this unjust scenario has brought back a voice for Nina."
Further to writing to the coroner in order to gain clarity about a few points, Ms Mitchell plans on requesting a revision of the 1993 inquest. She hopes a reassessment of the original findings would consider all of the new information which has come to light in the many years since.
"I personally believe there could be a breakthrough but this is something we need to allow the coroner to assess," she said.
Ms Mitchell said it had been humbling to have so many people contact her since the release of her podcast, many of whom had communicated their outrage about the lack of justice.
"We are in an era where people don't accept that a murderer can be walking around, free to live their life with no accountability," Ms Mitchell said.
"Especially when this is potentially someone they cross paths with regularly. It feels fantastic to have her in the spotlight and not forgotten. Now she is etched into the digital and social media world so that her story can be circulated as long as needed."
She said families of other victims of crime who are still without answers had also reached out to her, having read about her campaign within the renewed media coverage. These families have since been motivated to start their own justice campaigns.
"People power is incredible and I know we will see more and more come forward saying they aren't happy to just sit back and wait."
Ms Mitchell said she would like to see not only justice for Nina, but also for the families of the other murder victims within the Ballarat region, which are classed as cold cases.
Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or visit www.crimestoppersvic.com.au
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