Reward offered in WA cold case murder

WA Police investigating a two-decade-old murder are hoping a reward will flush out new information.
WA Police investigating a two-decade-old murder are hoping a reward will flush out new information.

A $250,000 reward has been offered in a bid to solve a two-decade-old murder in Western Australia and people who come forward may be granted immunity from prosecution.

The victim's wife has also issued a plea for people with information to speak up, at the same time questioning how the killer can sleep at night while "keeping such a dark secret for so long".

In March 1999, Andrew Podpinka was found stabbed to death in his home in Morley in suburban Perth by his wife and daughter when they returned from shopping.

The 43-year-old was found in the master bedroom with extensive wounds to his chest and back.

"This was a brutal killing of a man who was attacked while sitting inside his own home," Police Minister Paul Papalia said on Wednesday.

"Investigators are confident someone in the community knows what happened that day.

"I hope this reward might prompt someone to come forward and give information to detectives.

"For the sake of Mr Podpinka's family, who have suffered pain and anguish for more than 20 years, I urge you to speak up."

The victim's wife Margaret urged those involved in her husband's death to "take a moment to reflect on what you did to our family".

"How can you live with yourself? How can you sleep at night," she said.

"How can you look your own family in the eyes keeping such a dark secret for so long."

Mr Papalia said authorities might be prepared to consider protection from prosecution or pardon for anyone with information that leads to the conviction of the person or people responsible for Mr Podpinka's murder.

This was on the provision that the informant was not directly responsible for the killing.

Police Assistant Commissioner Brad Royce said the investigation into the killing had always remained active.

"We don't put files away. We continue," he said.

"We're at that space now where we've exhausted the opportunities we had from the original scene.

"Now we're asking people who may know something to come forward and help us and help the Podpinka family."

Mr Royce said developments in forensic technology had advanced the investigation but more information was required.

Mr Podpinka was a slight man with some physical disabilities and his wife said he would have had no chance to fight off his attacker.

"I'm hoping someone, somewhere knows something," she said.

"We do need public help to solve this cold case and make the community a safer place to live."

Australian Associated Press