A 14-year-old girl has been charged with murder after her 10-year-old cousin was found with her throat slit and words carved into her body on a remote farm.
The younger girl’s aunt returned to the family farmhouse in Gunnedah in north-east NSW at about 7am on Wednesday to find the girl with blood pouring from her body.
By the time police arrived the girl had already died.
By the time police arrived the girl had already died (police pictured at the crime scene)
Emergency services remain at the farmhouse (pictured) as forensic police scoured the scene for evidence
The aunt, who is the teenager’s mother, left the house at about 6.30am with another child to complete farm duties, The Daily Telegraph reported.
She returned 30 minutes later to find her niece with her throat slit.
The 14-year-old was found on a neighbouring property at 8.30am.
The 10-year-old had travelled 350km from Orange to stay with her cousin during the school holidays before her death on Wednesday morning.
It is believed the girl’s injuries had been inflicted with a knife and words were carved into her skin, but police are not releasing details of the wounds.
The teenager was arrested and taken to Gunnedah Police Station where she spent the day with medical experts and local detectives.
She was charged on Wednesday night.
Forensic police spent much of Wednesday scouring the property for evidence but are believed to remain there over the coming days.
Gunnedah in northern New South Wales is more than 430km from Sydney and has a population of just 13,000
FAMILY FARM HORROR: TIMELINE
Wednesday July 8
* 6:30am: Mother leaves home in Gunnedah, north-west NSW, to do farm work. Her daughter, 14, and niece, 10 are asleep inside.
* 7am: The woman returns and finds the younger girl bleeding from alleged knife wounds and her daughter missing.
* 7:15am: Emergency services arrive at the property but the 10-year-old is already dead.
* 8:30am: Police find the 14-year-old on a neighbouring property after a frantic search. She is taken to Gunnedah Police Station.
*10pm: The child is charged with her cousin’s alleged murder.
Gunnedah Mayor Councillor Jamie Chaffery told Daily Mail Australia the community’s prayers were with the family.
‘They’re dealing with this devastation of losing a young member of the family,’ he said.
‘The community has been through so much through three years of drought and COVID-19 but we are resilient and supportive of each other to get through the tough times.’
Councillor Chaffery said the community will be devastated by the ‘tragic event’.
‘We will be there to support each other and we will support the family,’ he said.
Those members of our community that will need support, we encourage them to reach out to Lifeline or Headspace.’
‘We appreciate the thoughts of the people reaching out from the broad areas across NSW that are offering their thoughts and prayers.’
The family of the 14-year-old have lived at the property more than a decade ago and are said to be well-respected in the Gunnedah community.
Senior police have described the death as one of the worst murders in recent history involving young girls.
The 14-year-old has been refused bail to appear before a children’s court on Thursday.
Police were called to a family farm in Gunnedah (main street pictured) in northwest NSW about 7am on Wednesday after reports the younger girl had serious lacerations