A picture supplied by Adrian Casaran-Warrick, of Ballina, of him and his daughter Tanilla Warrick-Deaves.
A picture supplied by Adrian Casaran-Warrick, of Ballina, of him and his daughter Tanilla Warrick-Deaves.

Grieving father's fears realised

THE father of a two-year-old girl who died after suffering a string of injuries is “devastated” to hear his beloved daughter’s death is now being treated as suspicious.

Tanilla Warrick-Deaves died in hospital on Saturday after police found her fragile body inflicted with a number of injuries at her Watanobbi home.

Police yesterday confirmed they were treating Tanilla’s death as suspicious after a post-mortem examination revealed she did not die from natural causes.

Tanilla lived in the Central Coast house with her mother and the mother’s partner, both of whom were interviewed by police after Tanilla’s death but released without charge.

The toddler’s biological father, Adrian Casaran-Warrick, lives in Ballina.

In the days following the death of his “beautiful and calm” curly-haired daughter, Mr Casaran-Warrick spent countless hours pacing around his weatherboard Ballina home waiting for the post-mortem results, which would tell him how Tanilla died.

That moment came yesterday afternoon when police called Mr Casaran-Warrick to inform him they were treating Tanilla’s death as suspicious.

He told The Northern Star he was both relieved and devastated to have his fears verified.

“She was the best of me and now I have this grief that can’t be taken away.

"I have cried all that I can and now I have no tears left,” he said.

“Sometimes it appears that I’m fine, but I’m not.

"I will start getting dizzy and not just that, but my legs will start giving way.

"I will be fine, then crying, and then I’ll be fine.”

Tanilla and her sister Tandara lived with their father and his partner, Brooke Bowen, in their Ballina home for four months up until January this year.

Strike Force Maynard, comprising detectives from both the Tuggerah Lakes Local Area Command and State Crime Command’s Homicide Squad, has been set up to investigate the child’s death.

Tuggerah Lakes crime manager, Detective Inspector David Waddell, said the investigation would focus on determining the direct cause of the child’s injuries.

“We are appealing to any members of the public who may have information to come forward,” Det Insp Waddell said.

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