CRIME

Tiahleigh Palmer's Mother Talks Of 'Angel' Daughter

The statement comes as police excavate her alleged killer's home.

23/09/2016 1:03 PM AEST | Updated September 23, 2016 21:36
Sky News
Cindy Palmer has spoken to the media for the first time in months about her daughter's death.

The mother of murdered Queensland schoolgirl Tiahleigh Palmer has said her daughter will be remembered as an "angel", as police excavate the home of her alleged killer.

Cindy Palmer, flanked by Queensland Homicide Detective Inspector Damien Hansen, told reporters during her first public press conference in months she will not let her daughter's death be in vain.

"First and foremost I would like to thank the Queensland police... for tirelessly working on Tiahleigh's case. I would also like to thank all the public -- all of your information, your phone calls, no matter how small or trivial have helped piece together the jigsaw puzzle that has led to the arrest," she said on Friday.

Sky News

Cindy Palmer also took aim at the family of Rick Thorburn, the man charged with murdering the 12-year-old while she was under foster care in his home.

"My other three children will now grow up without their sister and she will forever be an angel. I miss my daughter terribly every day and a piece of my heart is missing," she said.

"I have done the best to keep Tiahleigh's case in the spotlight and thank supporters for helping me. I will not let her death be in vain.

Her statement comes as police excavate the home of Tia's foster family, where she was allegedly killed 11 months ago.

Police allege Thorburn killed the 12-year-old on October 29 last year. Thorburn's 19-year-old son Trent has been charged with incest. Rick Thorburn reportedly woke from an induced coma on Thursday, amid reports he may have swallowed pills while in custody on Wednesday.

He has not yet spoken with police, Inspector Hansen said.

Prosecutors are expected to allege that Trent had sex with Tiahleigh a week before she died, and told a cousin he had gotten her pregnant.

Tiahleigh's foster mother Julene and foster brother Josh, 20, have been charged with perjury and attempting to pervert the course of justice.

As part of their forensic investigation, detectives on Friday brought an excavator to the Thorburns' Chambers Flat property.

Tia's body was found on the banks of the Pimpama River on November 5. Police have yet to find her school uniform and backpack.

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