Michael Hutchence died alone in a Sydney hotel room in 1997.
Michael Hutchence died alone in a Sydney hotel room in 1997.

Hutchence cop’s explosive tell-all

THE cop in charge of the Michael Hutchence death case insists he got it right as he reveals what he found in the rock star's hotel room and the shocking claims by the INXS frontman's then partner Paula Yates.

In an exclusive new podcast co-produced by News Corp's True Crime Australia and Nova Entertainment, former detective Inspector Mark 'Scarface' Smith has opened up vividly about the moment he got the call to head to Sydney's Ritz-Carlton hotel in November 1997 where the body of the singer had been found by a maid.

In at times graphic detail, Smith reveals the pressure he felt to "get it right" despite the rumours that continue to persist today that Hutchence's death was not a suicide but a death by sexual misadventure or even a murder.

Michael Hutchence’s partner Paula Yates refused to believe he committed suicide. File picture
Michael Hutchence’s partner Paula Yates refused to believe he committed suicide. File picture

He details what he saw in room 524 and said no-one could have been prepared to handle the grieving Yates' drunken outbursts nor the international media or fans that descended on Sydney over those weeks for an insight into the case.

"It was not what we had been expecting," he said.

FOLLOW: True Crime Australia on Facebook and Twitter

Former detective Mark 'Scarface' Smith is interviewed by Merrick Watts for Police Tape. Picture: Darren Leigh Roberts
Former detective Mark 'Scarface' Smith is interviewed by Merrick Watts for Police Tape. Picture: Darren Leigh Roberts


The revelations launch a new podcast and series of stories on True Crime Australia going behind the police tape to hear straight from the former investigating police officers, on the stories they could not tell before - from the execution contracts put out on their heads and the threats to their families, to the bullets they have had to literally dodge and the gangs that continue to pursue them today.

POLICE TAPE: Discover the 10-part podcast series and in-depth stories at True Crime Australia

Police Tape host Merrick Watts found the stories former police had to tell “fascinating”. Picture: Darren Leigh Roberts
Police Tape host Merrick Watts found the stories former police had to tell “fascinating”. Picture: Darren Leigh Roberts


The face and narrator of the series, radio personality, actor and presenter Merrick Watts said he jumped at the chance to tell the former officers' stories.

"Naturally people will be curious why a comedian would want to host a podcast interviewing police about some of the most serious crimes our country has witnessed," he said.

"Like so many other people, I find these stories and people fascinating. The unexpected details, the sense of 'being there' and the knowledge of what law enforcement does to protect the public intrigues me as much as anyone else. Hosting these conversations was an amazing experience."



Flipped and ripped: Armed police tear fugitives from car

premium_icon Flipped and ripped: Armed police tear fugitives from car

IN PHOTOS: Dramatic scenes have unfolded on the Bruce Highway when armed police...

Cancer battle inspires Gympie mum to realise Uni goals

premium_icon Cancer battle inspires Gympie mum to realise Uni goals

A CANCER diagnosis has inspired a Gympie mother of five to study Nursing Science...

The squatter’s shed hidden right near busy Gympie Highway

premium_icon The squatter’s shed hidden right near busy Gympie Highway

Small fire breaks out in squatter’s shed right next to Bruce Highway in Gympie...