Man told nurses he drove William Tyrell 300km out of Kendall

The inquest into the disappearance of William Tyrrell has heard a dying man confessed his involvement in the disappearance in his final months with his "best mate".

Nurse Kirston Okpegbue told the inquest on Tuesday Ray Porter, now deceased, was distressed when he walked up to her at the Port Macquarie aged care home in April 2019 and said he "didn't do anything wrong".

"All I did was give my best mate and a boy a lift," she recalled him saying.

The nurse asked him if he was talking about William Tyrrell, who had vanished from the tiny town of Kendall five years earlier.

William Tyrrell was three-years-old when he went missing.
William Tyrrell was three-years-old when he went missing.

"Yes," Mr Porter responded and put his head on her shoulder.

Ms Okpegbue said Mr Porter told her he'd picked up his friend and "a cute little boy" who he believed was William from behind Kendall school.

"Ray had stated he picked up his best mate at Kendall school, behind the school was a shed, and from there they drove 300km (north)," she said.

The inquest heard Mr Porter only spoke of two friends to nursing staff - one of them was "Phil" the other was "Frank".

The inquest has previously heard Mr Porter was very close with convicted paedophile Frank Abbott, his fishing buddy.

Counsel Assisting Gerard Craddock, SC, asked Ms Okpegbue if she remembered Mr Porter making a hand gesture that indicated something being dropped overboard from a boat, but she could not.

Frank Abbott in 2014
Frank Abbott in 2014

The inquest did not hear if nursing staff understood "Frank" to be Frank Abbott.

Abbott has never been charged over William Tyrrell's disappearance and denies all involvement.

Earlier on Tuesday a Kew woman told the inquest Abbott was telling "everyone" in Kew, the town next to Kendall, he knew "where William Tyrrell is".

The court heard, on Monday, Herons Creek's minister, Martin Parish, defended Abbott when allegations of child abuse first emerged in the community.

Investigators search bushland at Kendall. Picture: Nathan Edwards
Investigators search bushland at Kendall. Picture: Nathan Edwards

Mr Parish travelled to Sydney to tell a court his congregation, of which Abbott was a member, supported the accused sex offender.

He told the inquest another member of the flock, Geoff Owens, had offered a caravan for Abbott to live in and his bail was granted.

Abbott was eventually acquitted of the charges and has never been charged for William's disappearance, nor has anyone else.

The inquest, on Tuesday, heard from another Parish sibling, Danny, who reluctantly let Abbott live on the family homestead around the corner from Martin's church from 2011.

Mr Craddock asked Danny Parish if Abbott, some years after the boy's abduction in September 2014, had said "I know where William Tyrrell is, why don't you check Geoff Owen's place?"

"Yes he was telling everyone in Kew," Danny Parish said.

"He said it many times."

Abbott was living on the Parish property in 2014 when the three-year-old vanished from nearby Kendall.

Danny, multiple times on Tuesday, told the inquest "you don't cross Frank" and found him to be "scary".

Danny Parish did not know where Abbott was on the day William vanished.

 

Daniel Parish attends the inquest into William Tyrrell's disappearance. Picture: Nathan Edwards
Daniel Parish attends the inquest into William Tyrrell's disappearance. Picture: Nathan Edwards


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