Wed, 12 Sep, 2018Danielle McCarthy

Four years on: New development in William Tyrrell’s disappearance case

Four years on: New development in William Tyrrell’s disappearance case

Four years after the disappearance of three-year-old William Tyrrell, police have handed his presumed abduction to the State Coroner.

On the fourth anniversary of the toddler’s heartbreaking disappearance, policed announced overnight that the investigation will be handed to Deputy State Coroner Harriet Grahame.

An inquest into William’s case has also been proposed for next year.

“Investigators from the Homicide Squad’s Strike Force Rosann would like to acknowledge the continued strength and courage of William Tyrrell’s families today,” the statement reads.

“Over the past year, investigators have continued to explore lines of inquiry in an effort to find out what happened to William, including a large-scale forensic search.”

William’s family are aware of the development.

On September 12, 2014, William vanished from his grandmother’s home in Kendall, NSW.

It was later revealed that the young boy had been living in care after he was removed from his biological parents, Karlie Tyrrell and Brendan Collins.

William’s abduction sparked one of the largest manhunts in Australia’s history, but no trace of him has ever been discovered.

In June, police returned to the area where he disappeared in an attempt to find one last clue to one of Australia’s most notable missing child cases.

A four-week “forensic search” was carried out in the bushland that surrounded his foster grandmother’s house, however, no leads were found.

Last year, the NSW Supreme Court allowed the identity of William’s birth parents to be publicised but concluded that it was a “tragic probability” the boy was already dead.

Both his biological and foster families have been ruled out as suspects in his disappearance.

“Her Honour has requested a brief of evidence, which will be provided by the year’s end,” the NSW Police statement reads.

“The brief will cover various aspects of the investigation, as determined by the Coroner.

“The inquest will be an opportunity to test information and evidence gathered by Strike Force Rosann and further the investigation.

“This is another step in ensuring answers are provided to William’s loved ones.”

A $1 million reward is still on offer for information that leads to William’s recovery.

"Until we know conclusively that William is not alive, we'll treat it with the possibility that he still is alive," Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin said in June.

"But obviously we have grave concerns."

William, who disappeared while wearing his Spider-man costume, would have celebrated his seventh birthday in June.