BREAKTHROUGH: The scene at Allens Rd, Upper Tent Hill near where the body of Gatton teenager Jayde Kendall was found after a tip-off.
BREAKTHROUGH: The scene at Allens Rd, Upper Tent Hill near where the body of Gatton teenager Jayde Kendall was found after a tip-off. Nev Madsen

How the public helped police find Jayde Kendall

THE highly-publicised search for murdered Gatton teen Jayde Amanda Kendall led to the public making hundreds of calls to Crime Stoppers; resulting in 185 credible leads for investigators.

The leads were received via 153 calls and 32 online reports people made to the organisation between August 15 and 31.

Miss Kendall, 16, was last seen getting into a vehicle outside Lockyer District High School on August 14.

She was reported missing the following day - sparking a massive police search across the region.

Her body was found 13 days later, dumped in a paddock at Upper Tenthill, following a tip-off to Crime Stoppers.

Crime Stoppers boss Trevor O'Hara said the organisation was fielding up to 200 calls per day during the highly-publicised search for the missing teen.

But he said some of those calls also related to the search for another teen, Tiffany Taylor, 16, who went missing on July 12.

"We received a number of reported sightings of Jayde during this period and a number of reports about the movements of the vehicle police had identified," he said.

"We also received a number of calls about potential suspects and personal items belonging to Jayde, including a mobile phone, which were located in a paddock off the Warrego Highway."

Mr O'Hara said the 185 leads were initially verified before being handed to investigators within 30 minutes of being made.

He confirmed one call made to the organisation led to the breakthrough in the case.

"The number of calls we received surrounding Jayde Kendall was a lot higher compared with some other cases," he said.

"There was a large spike in a short period which showed the community was eager to divulge any information they believe could have helped investigators."

Darling Downs district officer Detective Inspector Dave Isherwood, who headed up the police investigation, said the public played a crucial role in the investigation.

He said the media's role in highlighting the case also directly led to people contacting Crime Stoppers.

"The public's input was amazing and it played a very crucial role in our overall investigation," he said.

"There was information passed on to us from members of the public through Crime Stoppers which allowed us to get the result we did, it was critical actually."

Lockyer Waters man Brenden Jacob Bennetts, 19, was charged with Miss Kendall's murder following the discovery of her body on August 27.

Mr Bennetts has not applied for bail and remains in custody at Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre at Wacol.

His matter will be back before Ipswich Magistrates Court on December 19.



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