Police find bodies of former TV reporter Jesse Baird and

Police find bodies of former TV reporter Jesse Baird and his partner Luke Davies after the suspected killer told investigators where to look

Australian police found the bodies of a couple hidden under rocks and rubble on a rural property, hours after the lover of a police officer who allegedly shot them in a “crime of passion” told investigators where to look , officials said.

The remains of former television reporter Jesse Baird, 26, and his flight attendant partner Luke Davies, 29, were found in the same surfboard bags that police say Senior Constable Beau Lamarre-Condon used to carry the bodies from Baird's Sydney home last week. said New South Wales Police Force Crime Commissioner Daniel Doherty.

The bodies were found at a property near Bungonia, a town 124 miles southwest of Sydney, just a 20-minute drive from another property where police divers had been searching waterways for days.

Police on Friday arrested Lamarre-Condon, who dated Baird until late last year, and charged him with murdering the couple. Lamarre-Condon has not entered a plea or requested bail.

Police conduct a line search near a body of water on a rural property near Bungonia, 105 miles southwest of Sydney, on Monday, February 26, 2024. Mick Tsikas/AP

Police suspect Lamarre-Condon initially dumped the bodies on the property on Wednesday, which officers later searched. But fearing that a traveling companion might reveal where they were going, he returned alone on Thursday to transport the bodies. Police say the acquaintance, who has not been named, did not know they were transporting bodies and was not an accomplice.

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Detective Sergeant Sasha Pinazza, who is in charge of the investigation, said the search ended on Monday with no clues found as to the location of the bodies.

“I am exhausted. I barely ate or slept. We went home last night completely exhausted, but it is not in our nature to give up,” Pinazza told reporters. “So we came together again this morning and achieved a wonderful result for the families.”

The breakthrough came when Lamarre-Condon, who had previously refused to answer police questions, spoke to investigators on Tuesday and told them where to look. A crime scene has now been identified in the area, the police said in a press release.

An allegation that a police officer committed murder with his service pistol has shocked the nation and prompted organizers of Sydney's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras to ask police late Monday not to take part in their annual parade this weekend.

Handgun ownership is strictly restricted in Australia. Police are reviewing gun handling procedures that allowed Lamarre-Condon to decommission his handgun to allegedly use it in a violent crime. The case is believed to be the first suspected murder committed by a New South Wales police officer in decades, BBC News previously reported.

A couple hugs at Jesse Baird's Paddington residence in Sydney on Tuesday, February 27, 2024. Mark Baker/AP

“We are in a position where a police firearm was used and that can never happen again,” said Police Commissioner Karen Webb. “We need to look for ways to mitigate that risk in any way we can.”

Webb, who attended the annual march in 2006, met with the Mardi Gras board on Tuesday to urge them to rethink.

She later described the meeting as “fruitful” and “very respectful,” but police were excluded from Saturday's parade.

The Mardi Gras board said LGBTQ communities across Australia were devastated by the loss of the couple who were planning to celebrate in the parade.

“The Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Board believes that the NSW Police march this year may increase the distress in our communities already severely affected by recent events in Parade 2024,” the board said in an explanation.

“This decision was not made lightly, particularly considering that many NSW Police members taking part in the parade are also members of the LGBTQIA+ community and are working with us to deal with the impact of this tragedy. However, we believe their participation in this year's event could “reinforce current feelings of sadness and grief,” the board added.

State opposition MP Jacqui Munro said the state government should withdraw funding for the event, which is a major tourist attraction, because of the exclusion of police. State Minister Chris Minns said he hoped police would be allowed to march, but ruled out withdrawing state funding.

Other floats would have boycotted the parade if police were allowed to march out of grief and extreme anger in the community, an LGBTQ+ rights activist said

Mardi Gras began in 1978 as a street protest in Sydney against anti-gay discrimination that was violently broken up by police. Since 1998, uniformed police officers have marched as a gesture of respect and support.

Sydney-born Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said relations between police and the LGBTQ community had made great progress since 1978.

“I think it’s very good that the police marched,” Albanese said. “Relationships have turned around and been positive, but I understand that the queer community in Sydney in particular is grieving, which is an enormous tragedy.”

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