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Erin Patterson Charged With 3 Counts of Murder, 5 Attempted Murder

The woman who hosted the July 29 mushroom lunch that allegedly killed three people is due in court this morning.
Arielle Richards
Melbourne, AU
Erin Patterson Charged With 3 Counts of Murder, 5 Attempted Murder
image via nine

Erin Patterson, the woman who hosted the July 29 mushroom lunch that allegedly killed three people, is due in court this morning after Victoria Police charged her with three counts of murder and five of attempted murder on Thursday.

Police said the charges were related to the meal she served at her home in Leongatha, Gippsland in July that left three people dead.

Journalists from national and international outlets gathered at the Latrobe Valley magistrates court in Morwell in Victoria’s south-east on Friday morning.

It is unclear when Patterson’s case will come before the court.


In August a 66-year-old woman Gail Patterson, the mother of the host’s ex-husband, as well as her 70-year-old sister and brother-in-law, died in hospital after a meal at a home in the town of Leongatha in South Gippsland. The 66-year-old woman’s husband, a 68-year-old Baptist Church pastor, was left in a critical condition, but survived.

Victoria Police searched the home of 49-year-old Erin Patterson, who was questioned and released.

Erin Patterson had maintained she was innocent in the matter. In a written statement to police, Patterson had said she’d bought dried mushrooms for the dish from a supermarket and an Asian grocery store, claiming she too had been hospitalised after the meal.

Police said it was a very unusual case.

“Of recent time, we have not had any cases like this,” Detective Inspector Dean Thomas said on 3AW radio.

“The deaths are really unexplained and we’re trying to get to the bottom of it to understand what has actually occurred.”

Children were also present but did not eat the meal, Thomas said.

The South Gippsland mayor, Nathan Hersey, said the families from the town of Korumburra were “very much involved in the faith community,” and that the local community had been gathering regularly to pray for the victims.

In a joint statement, the families said:

“They were parents, grandparents, siblings, children and pillars of faith within our community.

Their love, steadfast faith, and selfless service have left an indelible mark on our families, the Korumburra Baptist Church, the local community, and indeed, people around the globe.”


Victoria Health issued an alert at the start of a flourishing mushroom season in April that warned people not to eat mild mushrooms unless they know what they’re doing.

There are two varieties that grow across regional and metropolitan Victoria that can cause liver failure and even death – the Death Cap mushrooms and Yellow staining mushrooms. The most recent mushroom poisoning incident in the state was in 2020 when eight people fell ill and one person died.

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