Child In Spiderman Suit Seen In Car Same Day William Disappeared

Paul Savage walked into Taree Court behind his own adult son today to finally say what he knew about one of Australia’s darkest chapters – the disappearance of William Tyrrell.

Savage lives across the road from where the missing toddler was last seen in the country town of Kendall, playing on his foster grandmother’s lawn.

Today the 74-year-old widower sat in court near the families of William Tyrrell, waiting to be called as a witness later in the day.

The Coroner began proceedings by welcoming William’s loved ones to Taree and thanking them for their resolve.

She then heard evidence from Det Sgt Laura Beacroft, who was with the Child Abuse and Sex Crimes Squad, before being seconded to the William Tyrrell case in late 2015, to set up a Person of Interest profile.

William Tyrrell. Photo: Supplied

The difficulties in the case were huge.

No eyewitnesses, no forensic evidence.

Counsel Assisting Gerard Craddock SC saying: “The difficulty was nobody said 'that person took William Tyrrell and this is what they did'.”

“There was a very low standard you had to meet to become a person of interest in this investigation,” Beacroft said.

“There was a full re-canvass of the township of Kendall to ensure we had captured movements of everybody, not just residents.”

Police issued an extremely detailed survey to everyone in the town,  including questions on who was present in their homes between 9.30am and 10.30am on the day William went missing, what clubs or groups they were involved in, what vehicles they owned or used.

And importantly, when and how they became aware William Tyrrell went missing.

Divers search a dam as the search continued for evidence of William, on day three. Photo: AAP
What neighbours saw and heard could hold the key

Mr and Mrs Crabb were sitting on their verandah at the time and heard a car.

“The best way they could describe the vehicle was it sounded similar to what was being driven by the local post lady at the time,” Beacroft said .”

Nearby, Ronald Chapman also heard a noise, which he thought might be a postie.

He then saw a car.

“He says he saw a child in the back seat of that vehicle up against the passenger side of the window and his recollection was, the child was wearing a spiderman suit?” counsel assisting the coroner Gerald Craddock SC asked the officer.

“Yes,” she replied.

Mr Chapman was well respected in the area and the detective sergeant did not think he was making it up.

But police could not rule out it was William.