William Tyrrell: New information gained from Batar Creek search

Investigators have gained new information from the two day search at Batar Creek in the ongoing case into William Tyrrell’s 2014 disappearance. 

A line of inquiry into a ‘high risk’ person of interest led to the new search location in the vicinity of Batar Creek Road and Cedar Loggers Lane, Batar Creek.

Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin said while there was no evidence of William being in the location, there is a person who knows why investigators are searching this area.

“They will no doubt be feeling pressure from the intensity of the investigation,” he said. 

“I believe people close to this person might notice a change in their behaviour.   

“I would encourage them to come forward with any information they have – William's family need answers as to what happened to their little boy.”

Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin, head of Strike Force Rosann, sent a search team into bushland at Cedars Loggers Lane and Batar Creek Road in Batar Creek on June 27, confirming this was a new specific area of interest outside the perimeter of the original search zone.

The two day search has concluded and investigators will resume the forensic search around Benaroon Drive, Kendall.

A spokesperson from NSW Police said a ‘small pool of high risk persons of interest are actively being investigated’. 

Strike Force Rosann, which includes a contingent from the Public Order and Riot Squad, returned to Kendall on June 13 to execute a renewed search for information into the then three-year-old’s disappearance from his grandmother’s home on Benaroon Drive in September 2014.

Arrest or inquest: Strike Force Rosann will be ready beyond reasonable doubt that William Tyrrell vanished as a result of human intervention.

Arrest or inquest: Strike Force Rosann will be ready beyond reasonable doubt that William Tyrrell vanished as a result of human intervention.

The entire forensic search is expected to take four weeks to complete. It is currently in its third week. 

Recently William’s biological grandmother told media that the forensic search was pointless because he isn’t there.

A spokesperson from NSW Police said they would not respond to her comments because it was not in the interest of the investigation. 

Det Ch Insp Jubelin addressed the media on-site at 1pm on June 27 confirming a new area of interest is being looked at as a result of information uncovered through one of their lines of inquiry.

“Today we commenced a search as a part of our ongoing investigation into the disappearance of William Tyrrell in bushland near the intersection of Batar Creek Road and Cedars Loggers Lane,” he said.

“This location is approximately four kilometres away from William’s disappearance and where we’ve been conducting a forensic search for the past two and a half weeks.

“The reason why we are searching this very specific area of bushland is a result of information we’ve uncovered in the course of the investigation.

“We are looking for any information, any exhibits relating to William’s disappearance.”

Det Chief Insp Jubelin went as far as saying they are interested in anyone with information relating to a person or vehicle seen in the area in 2014 or more recently, and acting suspiciously or looking out of place, to contact the Strike Force via CrimeStoppers.

The search operation also involves police and emergency services volunteers.

“The line of inquiry we are pursuing is what has brought us to this specific location. We anticipate this search will take approximately two days, we’ve identified about 800 square metres.

“We are looking for anything that is foreign to the area, or links to William’s disappearance.”

Batar Creek resident Renate lives at the end of Batar Creek Road and said she noticed the search location change. 

“The search effort has been absolutely huge,” she said. 

Renate said it’s great to see so many organisations putting in the effort and hopefully they will be able to find something to give the family closure. 

William would have celebrated his seventh birthday on June 26.

Det Ch Insp Jubelin said earlier this week the thoughts of the Strike Force Rosann team were with William Tyrrell’s family.

“Our focus remains on providing his family with answers, and our investigation, along with the search of bushland at Kendall, is continuing.

“I want to thank the community for their ongoing support, particularly the local community, who have been very understanding and accommodating during the forensic search.”

NSW SES members gather together equipment to help in the investigation. Photo: NSW SES Mid North Coast region.

NSW SES members gather together equipment to help in the investigation. Photo: NSW SES Mid North Coast region.

Volunteers from Camden Haven, Wauchope, Port Macquarie Hastings, Forster Pacific Palms, Taree, Wingham and other areas on the Mid North Coast have been acknowledged for their assistance in the forensic search  at Benaroon Drive, Kendall.  

Det Ch Insp Jubelin said the assistance of local emergency services volunteers was imperative to the search operation. 

“Emergency services volunteers, such as the State Emergency Service and the Rural Fire Service, provide a wide-range of services to the community and we are thankful for the skills they bring to our search,” Det Ch Insp Jubelin said. 

“The volunteers bring a wealth of knowledge of the local area and an understanding of search operations, which allow the areas to be cleared professionally without disturbing the underlying areas.”

Search continues: Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin said the renewed search for William Tyrrell is deliberate and strategic and will position police with certainty should the matter result in conviction or at an inquest. Photo: Tracey Fairhurst.

Search continues: Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin said the renewed search for William Tyrrell is deliberate and strategic and will position police with certainty should the matter result in conviction or at an inquest. Photo: Tracey Fairhurst.

More than 15,000 pieces of information and lines of inquiry over the last three and a half years brought the Strike Force back to where it all started on June 13.

The new search is in its third week and has a forensic focus over an area of three square kilometres. The investigation is expected to take four weeks. 

Det Ch Insp Jubelin said the purpose of the evidence, “whether it’s presented to a court – coroner or criminal – is to prove that beyond reasonable doubt, William’s disappearance was the result of human intervention and not misadventure”.

William Tyrrell: Missing since September 12, 2014.

William Tyrrell: Missing since September 12, 2014.

He said time will be no barrier to finding evidence and refused to conclude the search for William had exhausted all possibility of an outcome.

"We have not given up on this investigation. We are committed to finding out what happened to William. We are mindful it has been three and half years since William disappeared and we still have not solved this matter,” Det Ch Insp Jubelin said.

The Tyrrell case will go to an inquest if it can’t be solved from a criminal perspective. But Det Ch Insp Jubelin said there are still strong lines of inquiry and people of interest that have the focus of the Strike Force.

He said among those many lines of inquiry were early allegations of an active paedophile ring operating out of the mid north coast.

“Until this matter is solved we will keep all lines of inquiry open. We need conclusive evidence before I can say one thing or another. That line of inquiry was a legitimate line of inquiry that we’ve explored and that didn’t provide any information that led to the charging of any person or the recovery of William.

I suggest you come to us before we come to you.

Det Ch Insp Gary Jubelin

“What we have done is build up a database of evidence that we readily refer to. The search we are doing and the defined areas we are looking at is for a reason.

“Everything we do is planned. There is strategy behind every time we talk to the media and every inquiry we do. It's not done in an ad hoc fashion.

“We've got a deliberate plan and it was coordinated at this time because it suited the investigation.”

William was taken into foster care at 11 months old.

Police have previously ruled out his foster and biological families as having played a role in his disappearance.

“We strongly believe there are people out there who have information on this and I make a point to those people – if you do have information concerning what happened to William you are at risk of committing a criminal offence by concealing an offence if you do not come forward,” Det Insp Jubelin said.

“I suggest you come to us before we come to you.”

Strike Force Rosann continues to brief the family on the investigation and the latest leads and thanked the Kendall community for its ongoing support.