ABC investigative reporter Rachael Brown revisits the unsolved murder of Maria James, found stabbed to death at the back of her Melbourne bookshop in 1980.
In each episode, Brown assesses contemporaneous evidence and discusses her findings with key figures in the case – including Mark and Adam James, Maria’s sons, and Ron Iddles, the detective originally responsible for investigating the crime. By treating the subject matter with care and working with the support of the family involved, Brown largely avoids the voyeurism associated with many true crime podcasts while uncovering facts with the potential to change the course of police investigations.
In 2017, Trace received a Walkley Award for Innovation (acknowledging its cross-platform delivery and active engagement of its listeners), and was a finalist in the Investigative Journalism and Radio/Audio categories. In early 2018, it was awarded the 2017 Melbourne Press Club Podcasting Quill award.
Alongside Brown, the podcast makes use of an extensive team of ABC producers including composer and audio producer Martin Peralta, sound engineer Judy Rapley, script editor Sophie Townsend, fact checker Emma Lancaster, producers Kerrie Ritchie, Rachel Carbonell, Andy Burns and Ryan Pemberton, digital producer Jeremy Story Carter, executive producer Tim Roxburgh and executive producer and series editor Jesse Cox.