New details after dad, 2yo son found dead

A report will be prepared for the information of the NSW Coroner following the death of a man and a child on the Far North Coast overnight.

The bodies of a man and his two-year-old son have been found in a unit after the father failed to return the boy to his mother following an access visit.

NSW Police are treating their deaths as a murder-suicide after officers found their bodies in the unit in College St, East Lismore about 9.45pm on Sunday when they made a welfare check.

The 38-year-old man was known to police for previous domestic violence matters, NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Peter Thurtell told media on Monday.

He described the situation as “very sad”.

“That was a father and son and a more tragic event you wouldn’t come across,” he said.

Deputy NSW Police Commissioner Peter Thurtell told reporters the man and boy found dead is being investigated as a murder-suicide. Picture: NewsWire/ Gaye Gerard

While the man was known for domestic violence matters, they were not “significant issues”, Deputy Commissioner Thurtell said.

“My understanding is that the male had an access visit on the day … the mother raised concerns with the fact that they were due to hand over the child at 4.30pm, and by 5.30pm she had contacted the police and we went around to the residence and made the discovery.”

He said there was no weapon involved, and police are looking at supporting the “poor mother” who lost a child.

“The father has created a system where both he and the child have passed away as a result of the system he set up,” he said.

A crime scene has been established overnight and inquiries into the deaths are now underway under Strike Force McGuren.

A report is being prepared for the coroner.

If you or someone you know is experiencing sexual abuse or family violence contact:


  • National Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence Counselling Service 24-hour helpline 1800 RESPECT on 1800 737 732

  • 24-hour Emergency Accommodation helpline on 1800 800 588

  • Safe At Home helpline on 1800 633 937

  • National Violence and Abuse Trauma Counselling and Recovery Service on 1800 FULLSTOP (1800 385 578). They also have a specific line for the LGBTIQA+ community called the Rainbow Sexual, Domestic and Family Violence Helpline on 1800 497 212

  • SHE (free and confidential counselling and support) on 6278 9090

  • Sexual Assault Support Services on 6231 1811, or after hours 6231 1817

  • Family Violence Crisis and Support Service on 1800 608 122

  • Bravehearts – Sexual Assault Support for Children on 1800 BRAVE 1

  • Kids Helpline is for young people aged 5 to 25 on 1800 551 800


Don't go it alone. Please reach out for help by contacting Lifeline on 13 11 14


Don't go it alone. Please reach out for help.

Lifeline: 13 11 14 or

Beyond Blue: 1300 22 4636 or

Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800 or

Headspace: 1800 650 890 or

13YARN: Speak to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander crisis supporter on 13 92 76 or visit

Are you anxious? Take the Beyond Blue quiz to see how you’re tracking and whether you could benefit from support