Jane (9), Arnna (7) and Grant Beaumont (4) were three siblings collectively known as the Beaumont children who disappeared from Glenelg Beach near Adelaide, South Australia on Australia Day, 26 January 1966.
Their case resulted in one of the largest police investigations in Australian criminal history and remains one of Australia's most infamous cold cases. The huge attention given to this case, its significance in Australian criminal history, and the fact that the mystery of their disappearance has never been explained, has led to the story being revisited by the press on a regular basis. It is also viewed by many social commentators as a significant event in the evolution of Australian society, with a large number of people changing the way they supervised their children on a daily basis.
On Australia Day, 26 January 1966, a hot summer day, the children took a five-minute bus journey from their home to the beach; they had taken a similar trip to the beach the day before. Jane, the eldest child, was considered responsible enough to care for the two younger children, and their parents were not concerned. They left home at 10am and were expected to return home by 2pm. Their parents became worried when they had not returned and called the police at 7:30pm.
Police investigating the case found several witnesses who had seen the children near the beach, in the company of a tall, blond, thin-faced man, of thin to athletic build and in his mid-30s. The children were playing with him, and appeared relaxed and to be enjoying themselves. The man and the children were seen walking away from the beach some time later, which the police estimated to be around 12:15 pm.
At about 3 pm the children were seen walking alone, away from the beach, along Jetty Road, in the general direction of their home. The witness, a postman, knew the children well, and his statement was regarded as factual. He said the children had stopped to say hello to him, and seemed cheerful. Police could not determine why the reliable children, already three hours late, were strolling alone and seemingly unconcerned. This was the last confirmed sighting of the children. It has been suggested that the postman was mistaken on when he encountered the children, and that he actually met them before noon.Read more...