William Tyrrell’s Parents Deny Involvement In Disappearance As Inquest Wraps Until August
William Tyrrell’s biological parents have denied any involvement in his disappearance, as they took the stand at the coronial inquest on Thursday afternoon.
His birth mother and father were both called to testify, telling the court they had no knowledge of what happened to the missing toddler.
The court heard his birth mother told police “I don’t know where William is... I had nothing to do with it...I want a normal life, I don’t want to be hiding away with them somewhere”.
She told the court she stood by that statement and that if she did know anything, she would “call Crime Stoppers”.
William’s biological father told the court he would “most definitely” tell authorities if he had any information that could help the investigation.
The court heard both biological parents were in Sydney on the day the boy went missing in Kendall on September 12, 2014, with his birth mother heavily pregnant and preparing to give birth to another child.
Both parents had previously absconded with William and stayed hidden for “five or six weeks” after the department ordered he be removed from their care at nine months old, the court heard.
They were eventually tracked down and allowed to maintain supervised contact visits with William in the months after he was placed in foster care.
William’s biological father told the court he was responsible for fleeing with William and said “At the time I was upset... I’m sorry for that”.
Both were asked if they had any knowledge of where William’s foster parents lived or where any of their relatives lived, telling the court they did not.
The court also heard William's biological grandmother told police she had a phone call from his birth father on the morning he disappeared, saying “something doesn’t feel right” and that he wasn’t going to work.
However, the birth father told the court he did not recall the conversation.
It came after testimony on Thursday morning from two police officers who were among the first responders in Kendall when William vanished.
They told the court they canvassed all CCTV cameras in Kendall and found only one camera at the local tennis club captured any cars going to and from Benaroon Drive that morning.
The inquest also heard from Gregory Newton, who was visiting his sister Heather Savage and brother-in-law Paul Savage in Kendall that day.
Savage lives across the road from William’s foster grandmother’s house, where he disappeared, and is represented by a lawyer at the inquest.
He denies any involvement in his disappearance.
Newton told the court he arrived in Benaroon Drive to see Savage standing in his driveway with a group of locals.
He was asked about the initial conversation he had with Savage upon arrival, when he learned there was a “little fella” missing.
“He was concerned...he was very worried,” he said of Savage.
The two men then participated in line searches with other locals in the bushland behind the properties.
The inquest has now been adjourned until April, when there will be a directions hearing, before it resumes in August for a month.
Before Thursday’s adjournment, the Counsel Assisting the Coroner Gerard Craddock SC told the court that this week’s proceedings were “just the tip of the iceberg” in relation to evidence still to be presented to the inquest.
He also told the court “The police investigation into the disappearance of William Tyrrell is ongoing. We certainly haven’t given up and if anybody, either in the room or in the community generally, has any further information which they think might be of assistance, we want to hear from them”.