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Victoria Police offer $1 million reward in Frankston cold case murder of Michele Brown

Michele Brown's body was discovered in a shed behind a Frankston gun shop in 1992. (Supplied: Victoria Police)

Victoria Police are offering a $1 million reward to anyone with information about the unsolved murder of Melbourne woman Michele Brown, who died in 1992.

On March 1, 1992 — the day of her disappearance — Ms Brown spent the day at a friend's house in Frankston, in Melbourne's south east, until about 7pm.

It was her 25th birthday.

She walked with a friend to the Food Plus store on Frankston-Dandenong Road and made a phone call, asking for her mother to pick her up from the Frankston railway station in about an hour.

Her friend left her at Food Plus, while Ms Brown was seen walking away from the Food Plus store between 7 and 7.15pm.

It's not known if Ms Brown ever made the 4 kilometre journey to Frankston railway station.

Michele Brown had planned to be picked up by her mother at Frankston railway station but disappeared during the night. (Supplied: Victoria Police)

Witnesses in the area reported several incidents from that evening.

A taxi driver saw a woman whom he believed to be Ms Brown near the phone boxes at the Frankston railway station between 8pm and 9pm.

A Playne Street resident, who lived only a few hundred metres from the station, reported hearing two separate screams shortly after 9pm.

Ms Brown's mother arrived at the Frankston railway station shortly after 8pm, but could not locate her daughter.

She then drove around looking for Ms Brown before returning home, noting it was unusual for her not to be waiting after making arrangements to be picked up.

"I said, 'oh, that's strange', because she's not there and she's always been there when asked to be picked up," Mrs Brown said.

"I never heard from her during the week which was unusual. The second week I started to get a bit worried and thought it didn't feel right.

"Sometimes mothers have these feelings that it's just not quite right."

On March 13, Ms Brown's parents went to the police station and reported her missing.

The following day, a staff member who worked at Miall's Gun Shop on Playne Street discovered Ms Brown's body in an old shed at the rear of the premises.

The shed was about 400m away from the train station and was accessible from the railway line and surrounded by blackberry bushes.

Ms Brown's body was in a state of severe decomposition and it was determined that she was murdered by a person or persons unknown.

Michele Brown's body was found in a state of severe decomposition in a shed behind a gun store. (Supplied: Victoria Police)

Reward offered as family seeks closure

A $1 million reward has been offered by police for information leading to the apprehension and subsequent conviction of the person or persons responsible for the death of Ms Brown.

Detective Inspector Thomas said police hoped solving the case would bring some closure to three decades of trauma for Ms Brown's family.

"Michele's family have lived the past 30 years not knowing what happened to their beloved daughter and sister," Detective Inspector Thomas said. 

"Ultimately, this is not only about holding those responsible to account but also providing Michele's family with answers and the opportunity for closure."

Ms Brown's sister Simone Kapiteyn said the family had been waiting three decades for answers.

"For us it would offer justice, it would offer peace to know that the person that took her life and took her from us is no longer walking free in the community," Ms Kapiteyn said.

Ms Brown was described as a loving, family-oriented person who loved sport and represented Victoria in Under-17s netball.

Ms Kapiteyn said the culprit had robbed Ms Brown's family of a lifetime of memories.

"She has missed every event in that time. She's never met my son, my husband, her nieces, nephews," she said.

"Every family event there's a piece missing."

A witness said he saw a woman fitting Michele's description at phoneboxes near Frankston railway station on the night of her disappearance. (Supplied: Victoria Police)

Detectives believe the public payphone at Frankston railway station is a key location in Ms Brown's murder, and are calling on anyone who saw woman fitting her description at the telephone box between 8 and 9pm on March 1, 1992 to come forward.

Investigators would also like to speak to anyone who noticed any suspicious or unusual activity in the area around Playne Street, Frankston on that night, or any activity at the rear of the gun shop or in the vacant block behind it.

Detective Inspector Dean Thomas said the Frankston community in 1992 was close-knit, leading police to believe someone from the area may have answers.

"I have no doubt that despite three decades passing, there are still people out there with information as to who was responsible for Michele's death and why," Detective Inspector Thomas said.

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