"I know who killed William." Everything we've learnt from the William Tyrrell inquest so far.

The name William Tyrrell is known across Australia, yet as we approach six years since the three-year-old vanished, no arrest has been made.

On the morning of September 12, 2014, William and his sister had awoken early at their foster grandmother’s home in Kendall, on NSW’s north coast. They were, according to testimony during the inquest into William’s disappearance, “excited to see Nanna”.

William was dressed in his favourite Spider-Man suit, a gift purchased for the toddler in Bali.

After breakfast and going for a walk, William played in the yard, roaring like a tiger.

His foster mother quickly made a cup of tea, before finding William on the deck. She took the last photograph of William. It was 9:37am.

William’s foster mother then sat down for a cup of tea with her own mother, but a few moments later, the yard went quiet.

“It had become quiet,” his foster mother described. “Too quiet.”

william tyrrell inquest news
William Tyrrell disappeared in 2014. Image: Supplied.

The little boy dressed as Spider-Man had vanished.

An inquest into William's disappearance resumed earlier this month, after pausing in November 2019. Here's what we've learned recently.

The final days of the inquest will be halted due to COVID-19.

On Wednesday, March 18, it was announced the William Tyrrell inquest will be halted because of the coronavirus crisis.


The hearings at Taree Local Court were scheduled to end on Friday, however the final two days will be postponed.

Investigators still hope to find out what happened to the missing toddler, and several key persons of interest are yet to be called.

One - convicted pedophile Frank Abbott - has been watching the hearing from Cessnock Correctional Centre and was expected to represent himself when called.

A man claimed to drive William 300 kilometres north.

An elderly patient told a nurse he had driven his "best mate" and William Tyrrell 300 kilometres north from Kendall, the inquest heard this week.

Aged care nurse Kirston Okpegbue, who worked at the Uniting Mingaletta Port Macquarie, said one of her patients Ray Porter was "distressed" when he told her he went on the drive. He disclosed the information before he died at the end of 2019.

The ABC reported Okpegbue said she was giving medicine to patients when Porter approached her in the corridor and said she "had one of those faces you could trust".

"I asked him what he was talking about and he said, 'I don't want any more visitors'," she said.

"He said, 'I didn't do anything wrong, all I did was give my best mate and [a] boy a lift'."

According to Okpegbue, that boy was William Tyrrell.

Porter said he "didn't do anything wrong" and just "picked up his best mate with a cute little boy near a shed at Kendall school."

Tara Schofield, service manager at the aged care facility in Port Macquarie, told the court she called police after the conversation was reported to her.

The court heard Porter had "no form of mental decline" before his death and had previously heard he was a close friend of Frank Abbott.

'I know where William Tyrrell is.'

Earlier on Tuesday, the inquest heard Frank Abbott, who is serving 16 years for the sexual abuse of three children, told a neighbour he "knew where William Tyrrell is", the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

Danny Parish, whose family property Abbott lived on for a period, was asked by counsel assisting the Coroner Gerard Craddock SC "Did Frank Abbott say 'I know where William Tyrrell is, why don't you check Geoff Owen's place?"

"Yes, he was telling everyone in Kew. He said it many times," Parish responded.


Last week the inquest heard from another neighbour who said Abbott visited late at night to tell them "news" that Geoff Owen was "a suspect in the William case and the police have come to see him".

Owen had been to the home from which William vanished to install decking prior to his disappearance.

'I know who killed William.'

Earlier this month, the inquest heard from a woman, who cannot be named for legal reasons, who said she was looking after two brothers for the first time when the younger sibling alleged they knew who killed William.

"He said, 'I know who killed William'," the woman told Taree Court, the ABC reported.

The woman said the boy told her convicted sex offender Frank Abbott had killed William and put his body in a suitcase.

The older brother had tried to silence the younger sibling as he was scared, she said.

"Did they say if they told anyone, that their mother's neck would be snapped?" Counsel Assisting Gerard Craddock asked.

"Yes," the woman replied.

The babysitter relayed the allegation to her own mother, who reported it to police.

Abbott has long been a person of interest in the case.

Abbott was living in a caravan on a sawmill near Kendall, on NSW’s mid north coast, when the toddler disappeared five years ago, Ten News reported last year.

The property was about eight kilometres away from where William went missing from his foster grandmother’s home at about 10.15am on September 12, 2014.

Police, sniffer dogs and SES personnel searched the sawmill on Herons Creek Road last year as the inquest was sitting in Taree.

'Searching in the wrong place.'

Frank Abbott used to do repair jobs at Top Takeaway in Wauchope. Former shop owner Jan Anderson said Abbott made a comment when police searched the property of a washing machine repairman after William disappeared.

"Frank made a comment he thought they were searching in the wrong spot for William Tyrrell, which seemed like a very strange comment to make," Anderson said.

The court also heard how Abbott pointed out a strange smell coming from bushland.

"He kept going on about a bad smell around Logans Crossing area. We said it was probably a dead kangaroo… he said 'I know the difference between a dead kangaroo and a dead human'," Anderson told the inquest.


When asked if Abbott had reported the smell to police, Anderson said Abbott did not.

"He said, 'No, no, no, I am not going to do that… if there is something up there, I will get the blame for it'."

Another man lied about this whereabouts on the day William vanished.

North Coast man Tony Jones told the inquest he can't remember where he was on the day William disappeared, after his ex-wife and son testified that he lied about his whereabouts.

Jones initially told police he was collecting scrap metal with his son Duane Gardoll, but both Gardoll and Jones' ex-wife Debbie told the court that wasn't true, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

When asked by counsel assisting Gerard Craddock, SC, about where he was that day, Jones said he had "no recollections, none whatsoever".

Max Jones, who is unrelated to Tony Jones, gave evidence at Taree Courthouse on March 10, 2020, that he saw Tony Jones parked in a white Camry at Henry Kendall Reserve on the day the toddler went missing.

Jones said that could not have been him, as he was "never allowed to drive Debbie's cars".

Jones was jailed for child sex offences weeks after William's disappearance.

Outside the court, he knocked the camera out of the hands of a photographer and pushed his way past media, making no comment when reporters asked whether he knew what happened to the young boy.

Once again, the inquest into William Tyrrell's disappearance will halt this week to help slow the spread of COVID-19.

On Wednesday, deputy state coroner Harriet Grahame told the court a directions hearing will be held in the future.

But despite the update, the police investigation is still ongoing.

"Nothing in relation to this matter I consider to be a cold case," Grahame said in court.

"It's an ongoing investigation, it's continuing, I'm happy to indicate that."

The inquest had already uncovered new leads which police were investigating.

Hopefully, they will finally uncover the answer to the question we've been asking for more than five years: What happened to William Tyrrell?

00:00 / ???