Erin Patterson, a Leongatha resident in Victoria’s Gippsland region, has recently been charged with three counts of murder in connection with a tragic incident that occurred four months ago. The incident involved a poisonous mushroom meal that resulted in the deaths of three of her relatives.
On Thursday morning, Patterson was apprehended at her home by authorities, and a thorough investigation was conducted as the police meticulously searched her property throughout the day.
Following her arrest, Patterson was taken to Wonthaggi Police Station, where she underwent an extensive five-hour interrogation by detectives. During this questioning, around 7.30 p.m., the police officially announced the charges against her.
The murder charges and two of the attempted murder charges are connected to an incident that occurred on July 29. Four of her relatives fell ill during a mushroom lunch at Patterson’s residence. Sadly, Heather Wilkinson, aged 66, along with Gail Patterson and her husband, Don Patterson, both aged 70 and Heather’s sister, tragically passed away in August after consuming Erin’s beef Wellington.
It’s important to note that the Patterson’s were the parents of Simon Patterson, Erin’s estranged husband. Simon was originally scheduled to attend the lunch but decided to skip it at the last minute. Ian Wilkinson, Ms. Wilkinson’s spouse and a Baptist church pastor, was the sole survivor but suffered critical illness and spent nearly two months in the hospital.
In addition to the charges mentioned above, Erin Patterson also faced three other attempted murder charges related to separate incidents involving her estranged husband, Simon Patterson. While the details of these incidents were not provided, they contributed to the overall charges against Erin.
According to a statement from the police, the additional three attempted murder charges are connected to separate incidents that occurred in Victoria between 2021 and 2022. It is alleged that a 48-year-old man from Korumburra fell ill after consuming meals on these specific dates.
Erin Patterson has been remanded in custody and will spend the night in jail before her appearance at Morwell Magistrates’ Court on Friday morning. She was observed being transported from Wonthaggi Police Station to the court cells in a police van around 8:30 p.m.
Homicide Squad Detective Inspector Dean Thomas described the charges as the next phase in an incredibly intricate, systematic, and thorough investigation.