The officers of Tbilisi Police Department under the Ministry of Internal Affairs along with Tbilisi Prosecutor"s Office, as a result of intensive operative-search and investigative activities, solved the case of premeditated murder of an Australian citizen - Shanae Brooke Edwards on July 30, 2021, which took place in vicinities of Mtatsminda Park, Tbilisi. Based on the relevant court decision, Georgian citizen residing in Tbilisi has been detained under Article 108 of the Criminal Code of Georgia.
Shanae Brooke Edwards, an Australian citizen, had been temporarily living on Gogebashvili Street, Tbilisi throughout the recent year. According to her friends, she often used to go on a walk in the forested area located near Mtatsminda Park.
On July 30, Shanae Brooke was supposed to meet her friends, however did not appear on time, and since then communication with her has been cut off.
Later on, Shanae Brooke’s friends filed a police report on her disappearance.
As soon as the report was received, the search operation was initiated by the officers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
Several hundred employees of the Criminal Police, Emergency Situations Management Service and Special Tasks Department were involved in search activities.
Search operation also involved K-9 service of Forensic-Criminalistics Department.
In the afternoon of July 31, as a result of intensive search operation, the body of a young woman was found with traces of violence. The investigator of the Ministry of Internal Affairs inspected the scene and the body of the deceased with the involvement of forensic experts from the Forensic-Criminalistics Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, in the course of which a number of items relevant to the case and biological traces were obtained.
The weapon of crime - a knife was also seized by the law enforcers in a damaged condition. After inspecting the crime scene, the body was transferred to Levan Samkharauli National Forensics Bureau where relevant body examination was conducted. Items and genetic traces extracted from the scene underwent a number of examination procedures, including biological, traceological, genetic and fingerprint examinations.
The investigation has carried out several hundred police activities.
More than 200 people were interviewed, including friends, co-workers, neighbors of the deceased woman as well as people employed and present in Mtatsminda Park on the day of the crime. Based on the information received from them, in order to identify the offender, a composite sketch was created which was sent to all operative units. The routes of Shanae Brooke’s movement were examined as well as video materials depicting her movement on the day of the incident. Investigation has also studied several dozens of video surveillance camera footages owned by Public Safety Command Center – “112” and private facilities installed near the place of crime, victim’s place of temporary residence and streets located near Mtatsminda Park.
Within the framework of international police cooperation and legal assistance, various activities were carried out:
In particular, Shanae Brooke’s friend in the United States was interviewed on distance, with whom the victim communicated through the social network before her death.
In addition to the mentioned, biological traces of the supposed offender obtained from the crime scene has been sent to 194 member states of Interpol for comparing to the DNA databases.
Biological samples were taken from several dozen people allegedly involved in the crime on the basis of which genetic examinations were appointed. All of them underwent a detailed interrogation. Alibies provided by the mentioned individuals to the investigation on their whereabouts at the time of murder were verified by various investigative measures. As a result of complex and multifaceted investigative activities, the circle of the supposed offenders was reduced to a minimum, whereas, as a result of genetic examination report the identity of the offender was unequivocally confirmed.
Based on the evidence obtained through the process of investigation, including witness testimonies, video surveillance camera recordings, genetic examination reports and other evidences- R.M. (DoB 1988) was arrested on September 8 of the current year as the accused person based on the relevant court decision.
Investigation of the case is conducted under Article 108 of the Criminal Code of Georgia, envisaging from 7 to 15 years of imprisonment.