It has been 36 years since Megan Mulquiney disappeared without a trace from outside the Woden Plaza.
Since then, there have been no leads and no new evidence has come to light. Megan's family have gone on with their lives, and hope fades a little more with each passing year.
When ACT police announced they were re-opening the case two years ago, they gave the impression that new information had turned up since the main suspect in the case, serial rapist Paul Vincent Phillips, died.
Their announcement, accompanied by news articles, photographs, and a renewed interest in the case, gave hope to the Mulquiney family, to the Canberra public, and to the many other people in the city, and indeed the rest of Australia, that cold cases are never really closed.
But since then, nothing much has changed for the Mulquiney family, apart from increased levels of stress and uncertainty.
The police may have had the best of intentions when they announced they were looking at the case with fresh eyes, but the fact remains that the territory's police force is not properly resourced to look into cold cases in a sustained way.
The Mulquiney case is not the only missing person case in the territory. Amelia Hausia was last seen - also at the Woden Plaza - in 1992. Elizabeth Herfort has been missing longer than Megan - her last sighting was on Commonwealth Avenue 40 years ago. Laura Haworth was last seen 12 years ago leaving for work in Queanbeyan.
All of these women, as well as several men, have families still waiting for answers. There are also the families of the half-a-dozen victims of unsolved murders in Canberra who have to endure the passing of years without knowing.
Canberra has in the past been accused of having no soul; along with this comes the assumption that the city is too quiet to have anything resembling an underbelly. And it's true that, commensurate to its size, missing persons cases are relatively scarce, and murders are notable for their rarity when compared with larger Australian cities.
Dorothy Mulquiney is right to feel let down at the thought that current events are taking resources away from looking into her daughter's disappearance.
But, as the recent violent death outside a Civic nightclub demonstrates, Canberra's police have plenty of current and ongoing cases to deal with - many with back stories and ongoing ramifications that will occupy them well into the foreseeable future.
However, Dorothy Mulquiney, Megan's mother, is right to feel let down at the thought that current events are taking resources away from looking into her daughter's disappearance, not least because she had long since stopped expecting anyone to keep trying.
The police have, to date, been silent on the state of Megan's case. After announcing, publicly, that the case was being reopened, they have steadfastly refused to report on any progress.
The public, having been reminded of the case after so many years, deserve to know how such cases are treated in the hierarchy of criminal matters.
There should be no mystery about the challenges of reopening a decades-old cold case, no obfuscation about the maddening futility of going over well-known facts, turning them in the light, and still coming up with nothing.
If the police expect members of the public to be forthcoming with information, they should extend the same courtesy to the people they are seeking to reassure and protect.