The parents of a baby girl who was found dead on a popular Gold Coast beach were reportedly homeless and living in parks near Surfers Paradise.
According to Nine News the couple had been living in makeshift camps in nearby parks and sand dunes after moving from the Tweed Heads area just over the New South Wales border to the Gold Coast.
Queensland Police confirmed the 48-year-old man and his 23-year-old partner were known to police and have been assisting with the investigation since their nine-month-old child was discovered on the shoreline in the early hours of Monday morning.
The Gold Coast Bulletin reports the couple also have a two-year-old son, who is now in the care of the Department of Child Safety.
Police and paramedics were called to Staghorn Avenue, the Esplande, at about 12.30am on Monday to attend to the young girl who was unresponsive on the beach.
Emergency services officers conducted CPR at the scene, however, they were unable to save the baby girl and she was declared deceased at the scene.
According to police the baby was located by the water’s edge with signs she had been in the water, however, the exact cause of her death is yet to be confirmed.
“The body was located on the edge of the surf, so clearly it had been in water, I don’t know how long for,” Detective Inspector Mark Hogan said at a press conference on Monday.
The detective described the incident as tragic and commended emergency service workers for their actions throughout the investigation.
“[These are] extremely tragic events, I can only imagine what it was like but full credit to them, they stood up and did their service and I’m very proud of what they did,” he said.
Surfers Paradise is one of the Gold Coast’s most popular tourist spots and is often teeming with late-night revellers during the summer.
The tragic incident occurred during one of the Gold Coast’s busiest weeks of the year, with thousands of school leavers descending upon its sands for Schoolies Week.
Police have confirmed the girl’s death was not schoolies related. CCTV from the stretch of beach is now being checked to help determine what led to the death of the little girl.