ActivePaper Archive Hope of creek clues - The West Australian , 11/20/2021

Hope of creek clues

Police drain waterway as Tyrrell mystery deepens

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The creek being drained and, above right, a police dog sniffs for clues.

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Police have combed bush, drained a creek and excluded a concrete slab from investigations on the fifth day of a renewed search for the remains of William Tyrrell.

Officers searched an area of bush a kilometre from where the boy disappeared in Kendall on the NSW mid-north coast, digging up dirt and draining a shallow creek on Friday morning. A piece of fabric was collected from the creek bed as potentially relevant evidence.

An electric pump emptied the creek on Thursday night. Anything found by the police is being presented to hydrologist Professor Jon Olley for examination.

Professor Olley found the remains of murdered Queensland schoolboy Daniel Morcombe in 2011.

The creek is one of three areas in Kendall, including the house from which three-year-old William disappeared from in 2014, being searched by police, though their efforts may be hampered by rain. Australian Federal Police officers brought in a groundpenetrating radar to scan a concrete slab leading to the garage at the property that belonged to the boy’s foster grandmother on Thursday.

William disappeared from the home seven years ago and the slab was laid after that.

But on Friday morning police confirmed results from the slab had not furthered the investigation. Cadaver dogs have also been on the scene and searched underneath the home on Thursday. It comes after Strike Force Rosann officers investigated theories William may have fallen from a balcony at the property.

Police announced on Monday they would be launching a fresh search for the boy, acting on “new information”, with detectives focusing on one person of interest.

It has since emerged the sole person of interest in the case is William’s foster mother.

Earlier this week police also seized a Mazda that previously belonged to the foster grandmother, who has since died.

Police also charged the boy’s former foster parents over an unrelated alleged assault on a different child.

The pair are due to face court on Tuesday.

The findings of a coronial inquest into William’s disappearance, which concluded last year, are yet to be handed down.

He has never been found despite several searches over the past seven years.

A $1 million reward for information on the case still stands.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison praised investigating police officers on Thursday, saying they had made “huge inroads” and would “never stop” looking into the mysterious disappearance.