Toy found in search for missing William
AS DOZENS of police arrive armed with forensic kits for a second day of digging, fresh hopes have emerged in the search for William Tyrrell and his dad has broken his silence.
The missing boy's father Brendan Collins gave a powerful message to his son when he spoke to The Daily Telegraphtoday.
"I've been out looking for you with a shovel digging in bushland … I know there's no point," he told the newspaper.
FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH BRENDAN COLLINS, VISIT THE DAILY TELEGRAPH WEBSITE
The despairing message comes as a faint glimmer of hope has emerged in the case which has gripped Australia for almost four years.
A child's toy along with other bags of evidence were collected yesterday as the intensive new search to solve the mystery of the missing boy in a Spiderman suit began.
However, police have not yet confirmed whether any of the new discoveries, made in dense bushland on NSW's Mid North Coast, identify any link with the missing boy.
William Tyrrell, then aged just three, vanished from his foster grandmother's property in Kendall on the New South Wales mid north coast on September 12, 2014.
He was playing in the yard of the home when he disappeared and the missing boy has not been seen since.
Shortly after the fresh dig began yesterday, NSW Police announced it was focusing on finding evidence to show his disappearance was the result of human intervention and not misadventure.
Speaking on ABC's 7.30 last night Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin said there was 690 persons of interest when the $1 million reward was offered for information leading to William's return in 2016.
He said they were a mix of high, medium and low risk people and the majority of the 690 he mentioned in 2016 fit into the low risk category.
"We've reduced the majority of the low risk persons of interest," he said. "We're concentrating on some high risk persons of interest and that's what those investigators attached to the Strike Force have been concentrating on. But we have substantially reduced the persons of interest."
Insp Jubelin added that detectives were expecting the person involved in his disappearance to be feeling the pressure and hit back at claims the investigation had come to a standstill.
"Each day we gather information, we build up a database of information we can refer to when we're following lines of inquiry," he said.
Shortly after William went missing in 2014, a search commenced involving hundreds of locals and emergency services workers.
They spent 10 days looking for him, believing he was lost, but to no avail.
They raked through about 600sq m of bush near Kendall with picks, hoes and shovels. Sniffer dogs were also deployed and a chainsaw was on hand.
Some officers were seen leaving the dense scrub carrying evidence bags of "foreign objects", but nothing believed to be linked to the case.
It will also make the person police suspect abducted William very, very uncomfortable, Insp Jubelin told A Current Affair on Wednesday night.
He believes William's abductor has already come under the investigation's radar, and the new search, combined with the million dollar reward on offer and the intense media interest would mean "the person involved in this, I am certain" would be feeling "a great deal of pressure".
"And I think the people around that person would be suspicious of their behaviour under pressure." Insp Jubelin added.
"And we make no excuse for it. I want that person to feel under pressure."
William's foster family have never given up hope of finding the boy, and on Wednesday they posted a message to social media.
"Today marks 1370 heartbreaking days since William disappeared," it read. "William's loved ones are, and will forever be indebted to the tremendous ongoing commitment of NSW Police; in particular, Strike Force Rosann who have been absolutely relentless in their ongoing investigation in the search for William.
"Since that tragic day on Friday 12 September 2014, hearts across Australia have been broken, but we have and will continue to maintain unwavering faith in NSW Police and carry hope in our hearts that William will be found. He is in our hearts always … Always."
The search resumes on Thursday and will last three to four weeks.
THE DISAPPEARANCE OF WILLIAM TYRRELL
SEPTEMBER 12 - Dressed in a Spider-Man outfit, three-year-old William Tyrrell goes missing from the front yard of his foster grandmother's home in Kendall, 40km south of Port Macquarie.
SEPTEMBER 21 - Police halt the search for the missing boy after scouring surrounding bushland and neighbouring houses.
JANUARY 20 - Police search the home and business of washing machine repairman William Spedding, who had been due to carry out repairs at the Kendall house at the time the boy disappeared.
JANUARY 23 - Spedding publicly denies any involvement in William's disappearance. No charges have been laid against him.
FEBRUARY 19 - Homicide detectives take over the case and say it's likely William was abducted.
MARCH 2 - Police search bushland near Bonny Hills for three days after a tip-off.
APRIL 17 - William's foster parents speak publicly for the first time in an emotional video released through police which does not identify them. On the same day, police say the boy may have been a victim of a paedophile ring.
SEPTEMBER 12 - "Where's William" week is launched one year after he disappeared.
SEPTEMBER 12 - A $1 million reward is offered for information leading to William's return.
AUGUST 24 - William's foster child status is revealed after a court ruling.
JUNE 12 - NSW Police announce the start of a four-week forensic search of bushland in Kendall.