Woman’s horror chainsaw torture revealed
WARNING: Graphic content
One of Tasmania's most depraved "psychopathic" killers is being considered for parole this week, having spent 33 years behind bars after he terrorised an entire community.
In 1986, Jamie John Curtis led a vicious rampage across Hobart where he abducted three people, murdering one and gang raping another, whom he also tortured with a chainsaw.
Now - with Curtis' parole pending - that woman has decided to break her 30-year silence and tell her story in full.
In a news.com.au exclusive, the woman - who was 17 at the time of the attack - says she is ready to reveal the moment she was forced into the boot of her car, while her fiance was murdered just meters away.
"I want to tell my story so the Parole Board understand who it is they are considering letting loose on the public again," says the Hobart woman, now aged 51.
"With the passing of time, people forget what happened. They need to be reminded."
But in a further cruel twist, Tasmania's archaic sexual assault victim-gag laws mean we cannot name the woman or show her face as she desires.
If we do, she could be prosecuted and we could face heavy fines or even jail.
"The killer already knows my name. This law doesn't protect me one bit" says the woman who has selected the pseudonym Alicia.
"It just works to silence me. But this is my story to tell, and I should be the one to tell it."
OUR LAST NIGHT TOGETHER
"Just keep quiet and you won't get hurt." This was the first thing Alicia heard when she woke on the morning of February 15, 1986.
There was a hand over her mouth and a knife at her throat. A young man she had never seen before was standing next to her bed, and her 22-year-old fiance, Dean Allan Allie, was missing.
The night before had been Valentine's Day. Alicia and her new fiance had spent the evening visiting Dean's parents.
"We were just a young and silly couple," Alicia says. "On weekends we liked yachting and fishing together. Dean worked for Glenorchy city council and he loved fixing his cars.
"When we got home, we headed to bed around midnight."
No one could have predicted it, but it was the last night the couple would ever spend together. Meanwhile, at this same time across town, 30-year-old Jamie John Curtis' night was just getting started.
Boozing till around 4am, the 1.8 metre tall, heavily tattooed ex-prisoner and a 16-year-old accomplice who cannot be named for legal reasons entered his white Ford Falcon and began prowling for a woman to rape.
The first two targets they approached rejected their offer for a "lift".
But then he spotted her: a 15-year-old delivery girl who was going about her morning paper round.
It was now approximately 5.45am and Curtis and his accomplice grabbed the girl, forcing her at knifepoint into the boot of the car.
Minutes later, when the Falcon stopped at traffic lights, the girl used a screwdriver to jimmy open the boot lock, breaking free and fleeing.
Curtis was undeterred, and instead settled on a local target: a young woman who he had seen in the neighbourhood where he resided.
He didn't know his target's name but in the preceding weeks, he had spied the young woman coming and going from her apartment. He had also begun to methodically clock her boyfriend's movements to and from work.
Around 8am, on February 15, 1986, Dean Allie heard a knock at the front door. His fiancee lay sleeping in the next room.
'THEY RAPED ME IN THE MOST DEGRADING WAY'
Alicia never saw Dean open the front door. But she certainly saw the aftermath.
"The man who woke me with the knife at my throat dragged me from my bed and into the living area.
"I saw Dean lying on the floor with his face covered in blood. A man was standing over Dean kicking him in the face. I immediately recognised him because he lived close by."
"Dean was in pain, lying on his side. He was groaning. The two men then tied Dean's arms behind his back and his feet together and dragged him into the shower."
The men then took turns bashing and torturing Dean, cracking his skull against the tiles, and scorching him with boiling water.
"Don't try anything or you'll be in the shower with your boyfriend," said Curtis.
Terrified, Alicia co-operated.
"He told me to lay on the bed so I did."
For two hours, the two men then took turns repeatedly raping Alicia.
"They raped me in the most degrading way, verbally taunting me and saying and doing the most sadistic things," she says.
"I was disgusted but I told myself to just get it over and done with and do whatever they say. It felt like it would never end."
Police reports show that throughout the gang-rape the older offender coached his young understudy, directing him on how to rape a woman adding, "If she gives you any trouble just punch her in the head."
In the next room, Dean was forced to listen to what a judge would later describe as an "unprovoked, brutal, prolonged, indiscriminate and callous" attack.
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It was now coming up to 11am. The men were sure the police would be looking for them due to the attack on the delivery girl, hours earlier.
They were about to go on the run, taking Dean's green HQ Holden.
"They told us they couldn't leave us behind. But they said they would let us go once we got far enough away. I told Dean to just do as they say and they'll let us go."
'EVER FELT THE BLADE OF A CHAINSAW ON YOUR SKIN?'
About an hour later the car arrived in the small township of Gretna, turning into a country property.
"We came to a clearing and a kind of valley," Alicia says. "The car stopped. Then I said 'Can we go now?'"
Curtis then replied "Don't be stupid. We're not going to let you go … You were conned. We conned ya."
"When he said that my heart just sank. I realised I had wasted so many opportunities to try to get away" said Alicia.
Now the pair were isolated, stuck in bushland with violent criminals. Things were about to go from bad to worse.
"Curtis told the young one to take out the chainsaw they had packed," Alicia says. "The young one started it up and Curtis said 'have you ever felt the blade of the chainsaw on your skin? It will be just like the chainsaw massacre movie'.
"He then told us that he was going to give us a two-minute headstart to run into the woods and then they would come after us with the chainsaw."
For more than an hour Curtis and his accomplice toyed with their victims, taunting them as to how they would like to kill them, and debating whether to do it with a shotgun, a knife or the chainsaw.
Eventually the men agreed to lock Alicia in the boot.
"They closed the lid and I heard Dean crying," she says. "I remember that vividly. I remember the terror and thinking this is the day I am going to die.
"I heard Dean say, 'No please'. That was the last thing I ever heard Dean say."
'EVER SEEN A DEAD PERSON BEFORE?'
Outside the car Curtis and his accomplice led Dean approximately 30 meters from the car. A frenzy of stabbing continued, with both men taking part until Dean was dead.
Back in the boot, Alicia was disoriented. It was a sweltering day and the men had turned the music up so loud she couldn't hear what was happening outside. When the music eventually stopped she knew the men had returned.
And she knew she was next.
"After they opened the boot they showed me the knife covered in blood.
"They said they had killed him - and I knew deep down that they had - but I was in disbelief and shock. I was living my worst nightmare.
"I said to them, 'I want to see him'.
"Curtis then asked me, 'Have you ever seen a dead person before?'"
Curtis escorted Alicia over to the body.
"I walked up and could see Dean lying on the ground. There was blood all over his chest and I could see holes. His eyes and lips were all blue and he was pale. There were flies all over his face. He was dead."
'JUST KILL ME ALREADY I WOULD RATHER BE DEAD'
Alicia was numb. The men, however, were hungry and decided to head to Gretna pub for meat pies and more alcohol.
Alicia was taken with them.
"As we sat in the parked car, I slowly pulled the lock up on my door. I was going to run," she says.
"I got the door open a little bit. But Curtis grabbed me by the hair and pulled me back while the young one started punching me.
"I began screaming. I could see people outside the pub. They didn't take any notice. No one did anything.
"Curtis sped off. On the way he said 'That's it you b**ch, that's the end of you.
"When we arrived back at the property, they told me they were going to kill me with the chainsaw. I pleaded with them, 'Can't you just do it with a knife?"
"I went and got a knife and handed it to them and said, 'Just kill me already, I would rather be dead'."
But Curtis had no intention of ending her suffering. Not yet.
Instead he decided to rape her again.
But this time Alicia fought back, biting Curtis and injuring him.
He retaliated with violence. And then she blacked out.
Hours later, a farmer who was walking through his property in Gretna stumbled upon a car with three unconscious people in it. Two males were passed out drunk. The third, a naked woman, was unconscious.
Using a stick, the farmer prodded her.
"As soon as he jabbed me I was wide awake, adrenaline pumping. I saw Curtis and the other one were still sleeping," she says.
Alicia jumped out of the car and tried to explain what had happened - but the farmer didn't believe her. Despairing the men might wake up, Alicia ran to the farmer's vehicle - willing to steal it if necessary - but the farmer followed in pursuit.
"When he got in the vehicle I begged him to take me to police," she says.
Police did arrive shortly after. They found two men still asleep. Nearby Dean Allie's body was found, with 12 stab wounds in his torso, multiple injuries consistent with being bashed repeatedly, and severe scolding marks on his head.
"I still see him in the morgue to this day," his sister Carol Allie, who later identified his body, tells news.com.au.
"He was the kind of person who would do absolutely anything for anyone. But he missed out on so much. He never got to become a dad, and our parents missed out on grandchildren from him."
Dean Allan Allie would have been 56 this year.
PAROLE BOARD RELEASES CURTIS
In June 1986, Jamie John Curtis was given a life sentence for the murder of Dean Allie.
It was one of the most notorious crimes to have ever occurred in Tasmania.
But eight months after his initial capture, another statewide manhunt was triggered after Curtis escaped Risdon Prison in an industrial-sized laundry cart. He was armed with a sharpened butter knife.
Days later, the fugitive was found on a country property, just meters away from where Alicia was in hiding under police guard.
Then in April last year, following a resentencing in 2002, the Tasmanian Parole Board elected to release the killer back into the community.
The Parole Board decision notes that Curtis still displays a "high number of psychopathic traits" which "cannot be cured", but went on to praise his "polite and courteous" engagement with prison staff, also noting "offending does reduce as age advances".
Dean's sister was appalled.
"Not once, in a single court hearing, did either of them have any remorse. We want the public to know what he's capable of," she told The Mercury.
"If he does it again, will (the Parole Board) be accountable?"
Alicia also commented - anonymously at the time - saying, "I don't think anyone who did what he did should be released from prison. He's pure evil to the core."
CURTIS BREACHES PAROLE
In October last year, Curtis was rearrested and held in custody after allegedly assaulting another woman, whom he had met on one of the dating sites he had signed up to weeks after leaving prison.
Curtis has been held in prison since then but this Friday will again be considered for release.
"He should never have been allowed out of jail last year," Alicia says.
"Since the original crime, I have suffered trauma to the most excruciating degree and have been taken to the edge of total despair.
"His freedom ended my freedom."
Alicia has written to the Parole Board begging them to meet with her, but they have refused, inviting her to write a letter instead.
"That's not good enough. They need to look me in the eye and listen to me. Jamie Curtis is a monster. I know this better than anyone else alive."
Under Tasmania's sexual assault victim gag-laws - Section 194K of the Evidence Act - Alicia is not permitted to speak under her real name.
"If the Parole Board refuse to meet with the victims, and the law says I can't use my own name, what am I supposed to do to get heard?"
Alicia has now joined news.com.au's #LetHerSpeak campaign - co-partnered with End Rape On Campus Australia and Marque Lawyers - and plans to fight through Tasmania's Supreme Court to win the right to use her real name.
"It's my story, it should be my right to tell it," she said.
Nina Funnell a Walkley Award winning journalist and the creator of the #LetHerSpeak campaign. You can donate to the #LetHerSpeak GoFundMe which will help fund Alicia's legal battle.
If you or someone you know needs help, please contact the National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service on 1800 RESPECT for 24/7 support.