Wednesday, 1 December 2004 - 4:00pm |

Van sightings sought in baby homicide case

1 min read

Police investigating the murder of baby Kathleen Rebecca Antishar Harris are seeking sightings of a Suzuki van in which she was a passenger on the day she died.

Tiny seven months old Kathleen was taken to an Otaki medical centre late Saturday morning, 27 November, but tragically she was already dead. Her stepfather has since been charged with murder and her mother with failing to provide the necessaries of life.

A post mortem has revealed that Kathleen had serious head injuries.

Detective Senior Sergeant Shane Cotter, Upper Hutt Police, says police have seized the 1986 Supercarry model Suzuki van as an exhibit, but they would like to hear from people who saw the vehicle travelling between Upper Hutt and Otaki on Saturday morning.

The van is painted gold, has a roof rack, sun roof, sliding doors on both sides of the vehicle and has bullbars in the front. Its registration number is RP 7425.

"We believe the van travelled over the Akatarawa Hill Road from Upper Hutt to Waikanae on Saturday morning and may have stopped for several minutes along the route," Detective Senior Sergeant Cotter says. "We also believe the van was at the Waikanae shopping centre around 10.15am on Saturday before travelling to Otaki."

He says police would like to hear from people who saw the van at any point on Saturday morning. People with information can call the Operation Kathleen team at Upper Hutt Police Station on 04 527 2300.

Detective Senior Sergeant Cotter says 20 staff are working on the inquiry, gathering background information from those who have been in contact with Kathleen during her short life.

Kathleen’s body was released yesterday to her natural father’s family.


Media note: Photos of the Suzuki van are available from Kaye Calder, tel 04 496 3464 or 0274 373 020.