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Major development in William Tyrrell inquiry as local claims sighting

Major development in William Tyrrell inquiry as local claims sighting

A local man has claimed to have seen William Tyrrell being driven away “with speed” from the direction of his foster grandmother’s house on the morning of his disappearance.

Ronald Chapman told the court on Wednesday he was standing in front of his Kendall home on the morning of September 12, 2014, when he saw an “old box-type four-wheel drive” with a woman behind the wheels and a boy in the back seat wearing a Spider-Man suit.

“A young boy with his hands up against the window. He was standing, he was unrestrained, he wasn’t crying,” Chapman told the inquest.

“I did utter a profanity under my breath about the woman being stupid and not having the kid restrained.”

He said the woman seemed to be in her late 20s or early 30s with blonde hair.

“She was driving with speed, I couldn’t estimate how fast, and almost lost control as she came around the corner at a wide angle,” he said.

Chapman claimed to see a blue sedan driven by a man follow shortly after. “It was virtually on two wheels on the grass as he came around the corner on the wrong side,” he said.

He said he later saw a news report that night about William Tyrrell being missing and identified him as the boy he saw in the car.

“I recognised the boy’s face and features,” he said. “I’m 100 per cent sure it was William in the back of the car …  No doubt.”

Chapman said after waiting “several weeks” for the police to come to his doors, he went to report the sighting. The court heard last week that Chapman was well-respected in the neighbourhood, and that police believed he was a credible witness.

The inquest continues.