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Sandy Edwards (Louise Le Nay)

Sandy Edwards and Kate Peterson were both introduced in late 1981, episode (235). Both had been sentenced for murder, though in Sandy's case I don't think we ever find out who she is supposed to have killed in this instance, though it could be the Megan Arnott referred to later on. Her sentence was 22 years.

They are seen together in the van taking them to Wentworth: Sandy tells Kate she's been in prison before, but not in Wentworth. When they arrive at Wentworth, Sandy takes the opportunity to play a trick on Janet Conway, and claims to be another prisoner on the charge sheet, who should have gone to Barnhurst. After this has been sorted out, Sandy and Kate are put to share a cell. Judy introduces the newcomers to the other women in the rec room. Sandy has heard about Bea from her time in Barnhurst and tells Kate later she thinks it's odd that she didn't come to check them out.

The reason soon becomes clear: Bea is suffering from a kidney disease and her illness leaves a power vacuum that Sandy thinks has better be filled, preferably by herself. She challenges Doreen and Judy over who shall operate the press, and they have to back off and let her.

Sandy gives Andrea ? a bashing for her treatment of Linda Golman (236): Bea is impressed, and gives her a pat on the back. Sandy is moved (with Kate) to share with Bea, as both the newcomers are seen as troublemakers.

The women split into two factions, one headed by Judy and Doreen and the other by Sandy. Sandy gets more concerned as Bea's condition worsens and she steals painkillers from the surgery for her, and forces the women to volunteer for tests to see whose tissue is compatible with Bea's to be a potential kindey donor. Bea eventually hands over the top dog position to Sandy (241).

Sandy gets a visit from her "lawyer", John Fitzwater, who is really working for McNally. He wants Sandy to recruit women from the prison to work as prostitutes on their release. Sandy asks for him to arrange to smuggle extra washing along with the normal deliveries (244) and also has a set of keys made and smuggled in. Meanwhile, Kate has started to meet Inspector Grace in secret to pass on information about Sandy - like the location of Meg Arnott's body - but Grace is more interested in Sandy's involvement with Fitzwater.

Sandy uses a key to open the security gates, gets to the staff room and drops a lighted cigarette into a locker. The fire is easily extinguished, but it is the final straw for Ted Douglas who happens to be visiting at teh time. He feels the women need a calming influence so he has Marie Winter transferred from Barnhurst.

At first Marie seems quite willing to defer to Sandy as top dog, but the women are increasingly unhappy and want Sandy to do something about the tight security. Marie manoeuvres Sandy into organising a riot (246) and lets her take all the credit - and the blame afterwards.

Erica sends Sandy to solitary (249), and the new male officer Steve Fawkner escorts her there. She hints that he may visit her whenever he likes, and he is obviously tempted. At the VJ's hearing, Sandy gets an additional two years and four months and, when she expresses her contempt of the hearing, another two days in solitary. This gives Marie Winter the chance to take over, and also for Steve and Sandy to start an affair, with him visiting her in solitary.

When she retuns to work (252), Sandy is told by Marie that she's taken over the laundry racket and switched from money to drugs. Sandy is angered, but backs down for the moment. The women hear a TV report that the McNally massage parlours have been raided and drug supplies found. Both Sandy and Marie are concerned that McNally is going to point blame at them and accuse someone inside of tipping off the cops. Marie intercepts a note from Fitzwater telling Sandy to "take care" of the lagger he's certain exists, and sends a reply back that Sandy is too busy with other matters. In revenge for this slight, Fitzwater has Sandy's husband Arthur killed in Pentridge (254).

Jack Fitzwater comes to see Sandy in person, posing as her solicitor (256) He lets Sandy know how unhappy he is with her and reminds her of the "Too busy" message she sent him. Sandy knows nothing about it and agrees with Jack that there is a lagger inside. She also agrees to take care of the lagger and asks him if he brought in what she asked for. Jack nods and produces a rather large switchblade. Inspector Grace arrives, having received a tip-off that Fitzwater is there to see Sandy. Jack expresses regret that he doesn't have more time to "enjoy" with Sandy. He also apologises about her husband but feels certain she understands. Sandy assures him that she does - and rams the switchblade deep in his gut. Jim bursts in to find Fitzwater's hands about Sandy's throat before he falls to the floor. Grace is right behind him and is ready to charge the blood-soaked Sandy with murder. But Jim is quick to say it appeared self-defense to him.

Sandy is by now suspicious of Kate and feeds her false information in the hope she will pas it on to the police. The rivalry between Sandy and Marie is also hotting up with Bea back on the scene. Marie decides she will have to get rid of Sandy and forces Kate to steal drugs from the infirmary to weaken Sandy and then tries to hang Sandy in the shower block (260), but Doreen and Bea save Sandy in time. Kate is now seriously worried that Sandy knows she has been lagging and attempts to poison Sandy (262) but Sandy makes her drink it herself.

Sandy and Marie come to an agreement: they will play a game of cards and the first one to draw teh ace of spades will be the one to kill Kate. Sandy wins and Marie organises a diversion in the grounds so that Sandy can get Kate out to the rubbish bin area for a "talk". Sandy never returns from this meeting and at first it is thought that she had escaped somehow, but it looks more likely that Kate has knocked her out and thrown her body in the garbage bin: the truck would have crushed it to leave no trace of Kate's crime.

A suitably mysterious end - some still believe to this day that Sandy really did escape - to one of the most action packed eras in Wentworth. Sandy takes on an importance out of all proportion to the length of her stay, and many fans of the series claim her as their favourite top dog.

Updated ~ 04 May 1998

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