The Beaumont children consisted of Jane Nartare Beaumont aged 9, Arnna Kathleen Beaumont aged 7 and Grant Ellis Beaumont aged 4. The children went missing from Glenelg beach in Australia, this occurred on January 26th, 1966 and was a suspected abduction and murder.
The children lived with their parents at their home (109 Harding Street) Jim and Nancy, they had been married in 1955. On the day of the disappearance, their father had two choices, one was to take his children to the beach. The other was to go to work. Jim chose to go to work.
At around 10:00am the children left there home to catch the local bus to Glenelg, the distance was very short; however, that day was very hot (104°F or 40°C). Money was provided by Nancy, 8 shillings to be exact. After the children departed for the beach, Nancy visited a friend. At the time letting your kids go to the beach on there own was not shamed upon and was actually quite reasonable.
However, when she returned at noon the children were not on the bus, At 2 o’clock the children were still not home.
At 3 o’clock Jim returned home early, when notified that his children were still not home, he went in search of them. At around 3:30, he came back to pick up his wife so that they could search together.
7:30 pm rolled around, Jim and Nancy then report the children missing. At this point, Jim resumed the search for his children, whereas Nancy stayed at home just in case they returned.
Individuals from the beach are said to have seen the children on the morning of the 26th, these individuals had claimed that the children were playing in the shallow part of the sea. At 11am, the children were seen playing near a water sprinkler, however, apparently, they weren’t alone.
A blonde man who wore a blue swimsuit was with the children or at least watching them. At 11:45am they have purchased items from a cake shop with more money then they were sent out with, which makes it highly possible that someone else paid for them.
At mid-day, the children were seen outside the male changing rooms appearing to be waiting for someone.
There where accounts of this man watching the children earlier that day on the beach, one of these eye witness accounts come from an older woman and others in the area. The following morning of January 27th, the children were officially declared missing, children don’t typically go missing in groups; however, these children where nowhere to be seen. No towels or any other belongings were located at the beach or anywhere else it was as though the children disappeared into thin air, the police said the children had at least 17 belongings in total with them that day.
There are different hypotheses for this case 1 the children drowned at Glenelg beach or 2 they were kidnapped or abducted.
However, drowning was ruled out because of the amounts of eye-witness testimonies claiming to see the children away from the water at certain times, if drowning did occur there would have been a lot of witnesses as this was a hectic day for the beach.
On the 29th of January, the Sunday mail newspaper releases a paper with the title “sex crime now feared” the article explains that the police fear the children have been murder and buried.
Six months later, a woman claiming to have seen children that matched the descriptions of the Beaumont children and a tall blonde male. However, due to the long period, it was tough to determine if this was the case, no evidence was ever found in the house. At this point, the police were starting to get desperate, and as a result brought in a psychic named Geared Croiset, however, this proved to be unsuccessful.
Fast-forward to two years down the line letters were received by Jim and Nancy allegedly from their eldest daughter. However, this turned out to be a hoax after handwriting experts where involved. The person who was 15 at the time wrote the letters as a joke; however, due to his age at the time, he was never charged.
Allegedly Jane was suspected of having a boyfriend at the beach; however, Nancy discarded this as children have friends and playmates of all kinds. However, this was brought up again after the disappearance. One of the theories is that Jane went to go and meet this person, this could be the man seen by individuals.
Who are the suspects?
Bevan Spenser von Einem was involved in murders and is in prison for 24 years for the murder of Richard Kelvin, he was aged 21 at the time of the children’s disappearance and has allegedly bragged about taking the children and conducting surgery and experiments on them. However, he would have been too young at the time according to the eyewitness testimonies.
Arthur Stanley Brown was a suspected suspect in 1998 because his face was very similar to the sketch. However, he would have been 50 at the time which doesn’t match with the description. Arthur was charged for rape in 1998; however, he became senile and would not be tried again. He died in 2002.
Anthony Munro was a bar owner and a convicted paedophile, he had pleaded guilty to child sex offences in South Australia four years before the children disappeared. Police believe Munro was in Adelaide around the time when the Beaumont children. Anthony also matches the description of the man at the time of the children’s disappearance.
Derrick Percy is one of Australia’s most famous criminals and was linked to the deaths of up to nine children. Derrick was arrested in 1969 for the murder of a 12-year-old boy. At the time of the Beaumont case, Derrick would have been 17 years old, and he admitted to being at the beach but denied involvement. He dead in 2013 from lung cancer aged 64.
Shortly before died police searched his possessions and found plans to abduct and murder more children. Police wanted his DNA to compare to other crimes, but this didn’t occur. His mother, Mrs Percy allegedly told her she “got rid of things” relating to her son.
Harry Phipps was said to look very similar to the sketch of the man seen with the children on that day, he also lived very close to Glenelg beach. He was known to have been violent and has been accused of sexually abusing his son and raping another young girl. He owned a factory at the time of the disappearance, and two young boys were asked to dig a large hole in that area. He died in in 2004, his son believed that he had a part to play in this case.
So, what has occurred recently? In 2013 police announce that previous allegations against Harry Phipps have been discounted and as a result, he is no longer a suspect in the disappearance. However, in 2013 a small area around a former factory was excavated in the same area the boys claim they dug a large hole.
Nothing was found at this time, in 2017 it was found out that they were digging in the wrong area. So very recently in 2018 individuals stated they would be excavating this site. As of now, you can find a press conference of this information on YouTube.
However, as of February 2nd 2018, the search was called off after only locating non-human bones and rubbish in the soil.