A four-week forensic investigation to find out what happened to missing boy William Tyrrell began earlier this week, but not everyone is happy. In fact, his biological grandmother Natalie Collins has hit out at investigators who are searching for clues to William’s whereabouts near bushland in Kendall, not far from where William disappeared on 12 September 2014.
Speaking exclusively to The Daily Telegraph, the 59-year-old said she thought investigators were wasting their time and claimed her beloved grandson was dead.
“This is just opening old wounds for us, the door never closes, the police are wasting good taxpayers’ money and their time, they’re never going to find William — I just know in my heart he’s dead,” she said. “I know exactly what’s happened, someone’s taken him and done something to him. Brendan (William’s father) says it, too, he believes William’s gone.”
William was just three years old when he vanished from his foster grandmother’s home without a trace. Natalie told The Daily Telegraph police didn’t inform William’s family the new investigation was taking place and claimed that the area they’re searching in was simply too far for William to have travelled to alone. She also questioned the clues investigators were looking for.
Her comments come a day after her son and William’s biological father Brendan broke his silence for the first time since being released from prison. During his interview with The Daily Telegraph, Brendan said he started digging in bushland for clues when he was released from prison two weeks ago, but admitted he thought his son was dead.
“I’ve been out looking for you with a shovel digging in bushland … I know there’s no point,” he said. “I think you’re dead, I think someone has hurt you bad. I’m so sorry I couldn’t help you.”
In February, Brendan was sentenced to seven months in prison after he was convicted of eight charges having stolen bank cards, toys, novelty items and clothing in addition to minor drug possession. At the same time, the country learned William was in state care at the time of his disappearance. Originally, before the court order was lifted, it was thought the then-three-year-old was snatched from his grandmother’s home, later revealed as his foster grandmother.
Speaking about the new search for clues into William’s disappearance, Homocide Squad’s Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin said the investigation would be thorough.
“This search will be detailed and documented, and we don’t know if we will find anything relevant, but we want to outline exactly what areas have been searched, who searched the area, and how it was searched,” he said in a statement.
There is currently a $1 million NSW Government reward on offer for information that leads to the recovery of William. Meanwhile, Jubelin added police were still hunting for persons of interest in the case.
“It is important I reiterate our commitment to finding William and reassure the community that we are continuing to investigate potential persons of interest with the same tenacity as we did right from the beginning,” he said. “We welcome any information that may assist the investigation and remind those who have information that may not have been inclined to come forward: now is the time to speak to us.”