Tracey Patient family thanks NZ public

  • 10/02/2016
Tracey Ann Patient
Tracey Ann Patient

The family of Tracey Ann Patient have thanked New Zealanders for their support, 40 years after the 13-year-old's murder.

Police last month announced they had been working full-time on the investigation since November last year, with eight detectives chasing up new leads. They say they have received dozens of calls offering fresh information on the case.

"We have been overwhelmed by the level of support that people in New Zealand have shown for Tracey's case since the police media campaign started," the family said in a statement today.

"It is amazing, but very reassuring, that so many people remember what happened to Tracey and, more importantly, still care."

The family said they appreciated the support and thanked everyone who had viewed and shared a video about the case on the police Facebook pages.

"We have heard some heart-breaking stories of how Tracey's murder affected not just her friends, but also people who had never even met her.

"The person who murdered Tracey did more than take one child's life and shatter one family; they took away the freedom, and altered the childhoods of a whole community.

"We have every confidence in the police team who are working on the case and feel sure that, with the public's help, they have a very good chance of solving the case and bringing Tracey's murderer to justice."

Tracey's body was found in a bush on Scenic Dr after she disappeared while walking home from a friend's house in January 1976, with evidence suggesting she had been strangled with a stocking.

Police said they had now received 165 calls about the case since January 28. They said around 70 of these calls were suggestions as to what the "126040" number could related to.

Two years after Tracey's death, police had an anonymous call telling them a signet ring belonging to Tracey was in a rubbish bin outside an Avondale chemist, though the caller gave no other information. The caller also mentioned the number 126040.

Anyone with any information on the case can contact police on 0800 000 111.