Assault charges against missing toddler William Tyrrell’s foster parents have been mentioned in a Sydney court.
The foster mother, 56, and foster father, 54, each face one count of common assault, alleged to have occurred at a home on Sydney’s upper north shore this year.
The charges do not relate to William, who went missing aged three in September 2014 from a home at Kendall on the NSW mid-north coast.
The foster parents were not required to appear at Hornsby Local Court, which was told police served a “mini-brief” of evidence on Monday.
“I’ve not had a chance to give it to my client,” lawyer Sharon Ramsden said.
The identities of the foster parents and the child subject of the charge cannot be revealed for legal reasons.
The court delayed Tuesday’s brief mention due to substantial media attention.
Magistrate Robyn Denes said she understood the interest in the case but questioned the true desire to mention the defendants’ connection to William.
Aside from that link, the matter was not dissimilar to matters heard in every court in NSW, she said, saying media weren’t in her court last week for a case involving “far more serious allegation” and a five-year-old.
“What’s the interest besides, dare I say it, the clickbait issue?” she said.
Told the foster parents hadn’t been identified in reporting as per long-running court orders, Ms Denes said: “There were cameras at their house so the neighbours know.”
Ms Ramsden forecast she may apply to have the court closed for future hearings.
Ms Denes said she hoped the matter would progress ordinarily in her list, like 90 other AVO and 75 charge matters she heard on Tuesday.
The matter was adjourned until December 7 for pleas to be entered.
The foster parents are excused from appearing on that day if legally represented.