New Search as Tyrrell Inquest Continues


An inquest into the suspected abduction of toddler William Tyrrell will continue after police in the Australian state of New South Wales launched a fresh search around the town where he disappeared.

As the inquest resumes in the regional town of Taree on Aug. 20, police on Aug. 19 launched a fresh local search five years on from his disappearance.

Police, sniffer dogs and SES personnel scoured bushland around Kendall and the nearby township of Herons Creek.

The inquest into the three-year-old’s suspected abduction heard on Monday the foster mother – who can’t be named for legal reasons – told police she saw two unknown sedans parked in the street outside William’s foster grandmother’s home on the morning he disappeared.

William was last seen at that home, on Benaroon Drive in Kendall on NSW’s mid-north coast, late on the morning of Sept. 12, 2014.

Detective Sergeant Laura Beacroft, who joined the investigation in September 2015, said she’d been unable to corroborate the foster mother’s statement about the cars seen at 7:30 a.m. and 9 a.m.

Under questioning from a lawyer for William’s biological father, the detective told the NSW Coroners Court some witnesses were adamant the cars described were not there.

One woman said she was sure she’d have noticed the cars as vehicles were rarely parked on the wide, quiet street, the inquest was told.
Det Sgt Beacroft said the foster father, who previously told the inquest he was out of town for work between 9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m., also couldn’t remember seeing the vehicles as he left.

William’s foster mother called police about 10:56 a.m., telling them her boy was wearing a Spider-Man suit when last seen about 10:30 a.m.

The inquest was told a local resident reported seeing two cars—one with a boy in the back seat wearing a Spider-Man costume—driving away from the area where William was last seen.

William Tyrrell
Missing child William Tyrrell, who vanished in 2014, last seen in a Spiderman outfit. (NSW Police)

Det Sgt Beacroft told the inquest she didn’t believe the resident, Ronald Chapman, had made up what he’d seen from outside his Laurel Street home the morning of Sept. 12.

Neither car has been identified during the investigation, the inquest was told.

Laurel Street sits east of a road that connects to Benaroon Drive and west of roads connecting to the Pacific Highway.

Det Sgt Beacroft said it was possible the two cars Chapman saw just happened to be heading in the same direction and weren’t in convoy.

Chapman is expected to give evidence at the inquest this week.