Story: Crime and the media

Unveiling Minnie Dean's headstone, 2009 (2nd of 2)

Unveiling Minnie Dean's headstone, 2009

Minnie Dean was buried in the Winton cemetery in an unmarked grave on which, it was claimed, nothing would grow. In 1985 Television New Zealand screened a series about the Dunedin lawyer Alf Hanlon, who defended Dean during her trial. The episode on Dean concluded that she was guilty only of manslaughter. The producer Wayne Tourell felt the grave should have a headstone. At the time a local man polled 112 Winton people, almost all of whom supported a headstone. A piece in the Southland Times opined, 'Perish the thought!' Nothing happened until January 2009, when an unauthorised headstone reading, 'Minnie Dean is part of Winton's history where she now lies is no mystery', appeared. This was removed, and in February 2009 around 60 people showed up for the unveiling of an authorised headstone erected on behalf of Deans' great-great-nephew, Martin McCrae, of Stirling, Scotland.

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How to cite this page:

Carl Walrond, 'Crime and the media - Popular culture and mythology', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 24 January 2022)

Story by Carl Walrond, published 5 May 2011, reviewed & revised 4 Apr 2018