Larissa’s father speaks out about her death

THE devastated father of the teenage girl whose body was found stuffed inside a barrel last week has spoken out for the first time about his daughter's horrific death.

Peter Beilby "can't comprehend how and why his daughter died and how her body came to be stuffed in a barrel", Nine News reports.

Mr Beilby, a widower who was bringing up his two daughters, 16-year-old Larissa and her older sister Deanna, "wants the world to see Larissa as they knew her".

Mr Beilby told Channel 9 his younger daughter was "cheeky … and adventurous".

He said the Craigslea High School students "loved to play tricks".

But his family is now struggling to come to terms with what happened to Larissa before she died and her remains ended up in a blue plastic barrel in Logan City south of Brisbane.

The teenager had entered into a romantic relationship with 34-year-old contract cleaner Zlatko Sikorsky, who was more than twice her age.

Mr Sikorsky's lawyer has indicated his client will be pleading not guilty to a murder charge following a day-long siege before his arrest last weekend.

Peter Beilby weeps by a shrine dedicated to his younger daughter, 16-year-old Larissa. Picture: Nine News.
Peter Beilby weeps by a shrine dedicated to his younger daughter, 16-year-old Larissa. Picture: Nine News.

A week after Larissa Beilby's body was found inside a barrel just north of the Gold Coast, trolls and "keyboard warriors" have littered the 16-year-old's social media with nasty comments.

Brett Thompson, CEO of Queensland's Homicide Victims Support Group, said comments on the teen's social media and comments made by Brendan Ryan, the lawyer representing the man accused of murdering Larissa, were "inappropriate".

Mr Thompson was referring to comments made by Mr Ryan yesterday claiming his client Zlatko Sikorsky was innocent and that Larissa's death could've been a result of "misadventure".

"Why couldn't he just finish the sentence at 'my client is innocent?'" Mr Thompson told news.com.au.

"All of a sudden people start speculating when no one has all the facts yet. The conversation should've been stopped after that sentence out of respect. This is not the time to stand up and make statements like that. It's the time for empathy.

Over the weekend, Queensland Police confirmed the tragic news that the body in the barrel belonged to Larissa.

 

Larissa Beilby.
Larissa Beilby.

Sikorsky surrendered on Saturday night after spending more than 24 hours inside a Sunshine Coast apartment in a tense standoff with police.

It was also revealed last week that Sikorsky, 34, and Larissa, 16, had been in a relationship prior to her alleged murder.

Larissa had left her family's Brisbane home on June 15 and was reported missing more than a week later after failing to make contact with her dad and siblings.

Mr Thompson slammed the people leaving victim-blaming comments on Larissa's social media, saying it "beggars belief".

People who leave those sorts of comments are clearly lacking something in their lives. The sort of people that need to belittle, leave misogynistic comments and claim the family are profiteering - it's all complete rubbish.

"The fact that there's humans who will attack people that are clearly at their most vulnerable beggars belief," he said. "They're keyboard warriors, absolutely."

A GoFundMe page to cover the family's funeral costs for Larissa has raised close to $15,000 of its $20,000 goal in less than two days. More than 400 people have already donated.

The victim blaming on Larissa's social media comes less than a month after Melbourne comedian Eurydice Dixon's alleged rape and murder.

Victoria Police warned young women to be careful after dark and have a mobile phone on them - but their message prompted a stinging response from women, tired of being blamed for the dangerous situations they find themselves in.

Mr Thompson said the comments left on Larissa's social media came from an array of people.

"There are definitely people who live in the world where they are too scared to voice their opinion. Then there are others who leave comments just to be nasty, or upset people or to get attention.

"Some people even go against their personal values to get that kind of attention but when you're talking about the most vulnerable people in society, why would you want to hurt them? Look at yourself and realise you're the real problem. To point the finger at them is a disgrace," he said.

Zlatko Sikorsky’s lawyer will fight his client’s murder charge.
Zlatko Sikorsky’s lawyer will fight his client’s murder charge.

Sikorsky has been charged with murder, torture, deprivation of liberty and interfering with a corpse over the death of Larissa, whose body was found in the back of a black ute near Logan.

The 34-year-old is also accused of detaining Larissa in a vehicle against her will and is facing drug, weapons and driving charges.

Sikorsky's lawyer Brendan Ryan has said on numerous occasions that his client will fight the murder charge and suggested Larissa may have died by accident.

"We're going to wait until the autopsy report is provided to police and to my office, Mr Ryan said outside court.

"No doubt, hopefully misadventure will be open on the basis of that autopsy report."

Police allege Sikorsky killed Larissa sometime between June 22 and 28 after she was last seen alive on June 15.

Earlier today, Joseph Geiger, the man accused of keeping Sikorsky in his Sunshine Coast apartment during the 27-hour siege, was granted bail.

 

Joseph Geiger has been granted bail. Picture: Lachie Millard
Joseph Geiger has been granted bail. Picture: Lachie Millard

Geiger is accused of harbouring Sikorsky a day after he allegedly fled a Logan City home in a ute stowed with a barrel containing Larissa's body.

The 38-year-old was been charged with being an accessory to the murder of Larissa after he allowed Sikorsky into his rented Alexandra Headland flat on June 29.

Maroochydore magistrate Matthew McLaughlin said Geiger should be granted bail as there was no evidence suggesting he was involved in Larissa's death.

Magistrate McLaughlin said at a court hearing on Tuesday Geiger did not pose a threat to the community as a "petty" criminal despite a past domestic violence conviction.

However, he labelled Geiger's claim he didn't know Sikorsky was wanted by police as "fanciful" and "laughable".

"You'd have to be living in a cave to not know who Sikorsky was," he told the court.

Magistrate McLaughlin adjourned his decision to Friday for Geiger's accommodation to be confirmed.

- With Wires


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