William Tyrrell: NSW Government announces $1 million reward for missing boy
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William Tyrrell: NSW Government announces $1 million reward for missing boy

The biggest monetary reward in NSW is on offer for anyone that can lead police to the whereabouts of missing toddler William Tyrrell.

In a significant development in the mystery that has gripped Australia, NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione and Premier Mike Baird announced the $1 million reward on Monday, the second anniversary of the three-year-old's disappearance.

It is double the amount of the state's previously highest standing reward of $500,000, attached to the 1999 case of murdered teenager Michelle Bright.

Unlike other rewards that are contingent on someone being convicted of a crime, the $1 million reward in William's case is for his location.

An image of William Tyrrell released on the two-year anniversary of his disappearance. A $1 million reward has been issued for information into his case.

An image of William Tyrrell released on the two-year anniversary of his disappearance. A $1 million reward has been issued for information into his case.

Photo: Supplied/Police Media
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"We are providing the largest ever reward to bring back William to his family, to his community," Mr Baird said.

"Those million dollars, we hope, encourage anyone with any information to come forward."

Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin reassured anyone who has information into William's location and has not come forward fearing they may have broken the law in concealing a crime, that this offence would be "negated the moment you come to police."

"It's unacceptable that two years down the track we haven't found out what's happened to William," he said.

William Tyrrell was three when he vanished from a home on the NSW Mid North Coast in 2014.

William Tyrrell was three when he vanished from a home on the NSW Mid North Coast in 2014.

Photo: Supplied

"I'm confident in saying it's only a matter of time before we find out what's happened to William and if we come to you, the offer of the reward is off the table."

600 persons of interest

William disappeared from his grandmother's yard in the small town of Kendall on the Mid North Coast on September 12, 2014.

NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione (centre), lead investigator Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin (left) and NSW Premier Mike Baird (right) announce a $1m reward to coincide with the second anniversary of William Tyrrell's disappearance.

NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione (centre), lead investigator Detective Chief Inspector Gary Jubelin (left) and NSW Premier Mike Baird (right) announce a $1m reward to coincide with the second anniversary of William Tyrrell's disappearance.

Photo: Peter Rae

For the past two years the Homicide Squad's Strike Force Rosann has been leading the investigation into his disappearance and have been given information about 600 persons of interest.

Fairfax Media reported on Sunday that of the 600 persons of interest in the sights of police, 200 have not been completely identified.

The backyard of William's grandmother's house on Benaroon Drive at Kendall.

The backyard of William's grandmother's house on Benaroon Drive at Kendall.

Photo: Wolter Peeters

Those profiles may include only physical descriptions from suspicious sightings and information gathered by police.

In a bid to rule in or out each name or description on the list, information relating to about 400 persons of interest have been sent out to police local area commands across the state.

Police have been given information about 600 persons of interest in the William Tyrrell investigation.

Police have been given information about 600 persons of interest in the William Tyrrell investigation.

Photo: Supplied

"I want to make it very clear that the fact that we've got so many persons of interest doesn't mean that we have no idea on what's happened," Chief Inspector Jubelin said. "We've cast the net very wide on this investigation."

He said police are keeping an open mind to the possibility William could still be alive two years since he was last seen by his family.

"We keep all options open, and until we've got evidence to the contrary, we'll treat this investigation as if he is potentially alive," Chief Inspector Jubelin said. "So the recovery of William - and I look at it from both ways - if he's alive or if we find William's remains as unpalatable as that sounds, we've said to the family we'll do everything possible to find out what's happened to William."

Chief Inspector Jubelin however urged members of the public not to waste the strike force's valuable time with "clairvoyants or dreams".

"We want to focus on tangible evidence," he said.

"Let's use common sense with the evidence that's provided. If a child's getting round in the McDonald's car park in a Spider-man suit now two years after William's disappeared, we're not particularly interested but ... we would be if anyone has concerns about the circumstances in which a child has come into a family or the way people react.

"This is probably a sign for people to look at. The way people react when we talk about William Tyrrell. It's very public case. Some people might overreact. Some people might overreact in the terms of they don't want to speak about it. Anything you have suspicion, provide it to us and we'll follow it up."

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Police have previously said the three-year-old could have been the target of a paedophile ring in the north coast region.

The case has been referred to the NSW coroner but police say investigations continue with the hope the young boy is still alive.

Ava Benny-Morrison is crime reporter with The Sydney Morning Herald