Why Police Kept This Murder Confession Secret for Almost 50 Years

Cheryl Grimmer was only 3 years old when she was kidnapped from Fairy Meadow Beach in New South Wales, Australia, on January 12, 1970. Witnesses reported they had seen a man take Cheryl from the shower block and run off with her.

Earlier this year, a man whose identity must be left unknown due to legal reasons was scheduled to stand trial in Australia for the murder of Cheryl. However, the suspect’s confession was categorized as inadmissible since he was 17 years old at the time and was interviewed without an adult present.

Murder Confession Released to Public

According to Australian broadcaster 7News, a transcript of the murder suspect’s confession has recently been released to the public. The transcript reads:

“I came around from the back of the shower block and grabbed the little girl. I tied a handkerchief and a shoelace around her mouth to stop her screaming and with the other shoelace I tied up her hands. She started to scream when I got her up there. She would not be quiet. So I put my arms around her throat and strangled her. I left her lying on the ground at the side of a tree. I covered her up with bushes and leaves and threw some dirt on top.”

The suspect also confessed that he had planned to take Cheryl approximately 2.5 miles from the beach into farmland in order to sexually assault her.

Brother Ricki Was Never Interviewed by Police

Cheryl’s 7-year-old brother, Ricki Nash, was the last person to see his sister alive before she was abducted–yet he was not interviewed by the police until two years ago, after the case was reopened.

“No one ever interviewed me, I was the last person to see her. Leaving her was the biggest mistake of my life,” he lamented.

When he asked his mother why no one ever asked him about his sister’s disappearance, she replied that she just wanted to protect him. She also revealed that she was unsure of why the police never questioned him about the incident.

The last thing Nash remembers about his sister is picking her up and lifting her to the water tap for a drink. “It was my fault. I shouldn’t have left, I should have let one of my brothers go down,” he recalled. “I should have been more aware of my surrounds. I will always blame myself, it’s now part of my DNA.”

Coroner Says Second Inquest Is Likely

Cheryl’s family has asked the coroner to perform a second inquest because new evidence has been discovered since she was officially announced dead back in May 2011. The original inquest did not include the testimony of the man who had confessed to kidnapping and killing Cheryl.

The family firmly believes that the first inquest was performed in a “half-hearted manner.” The coroner during the 2011 inquest was told that the suspect could not be located and therefore was unable to be placed in front of the court for examination.

In a closing plea, the family implored the court, “Your Honour, our family believes if a second inquest is granted and the suspect is questioned by the coroner this might lead to fresh evidence to be placed in front of the courts.” According to recent reports, a second inquest is very likely.