Little Jordan Thompson’s minder is living as recluse
CECIL Kennedy still lives in the same NSW country town where two state coroners, the police and a grief-stricken mother remain convinced he poisoned a young toddler.
But he is living the life of an isolated recluse, shunned by townsfolk, targeted by vigilantes and rarely leaving his shuttered home.
Kennedy was minding 21-month-old Jordan Thompson on March 19, 2005, while the toddler's mother went shopping.
He claims Jordan was in the bath playing happily when he left him for a moment and returned less than a minute later to find him laying face down in the water, presumably drowned.
But police allege in evidence presented to two coronial inquiries that Kennedy gave the little boy one of his antidepressant drugs, which resulted in his death, and then attempted to cover it up with a story about him falling in the bath.
Kennedy, 45, refused to answer questions at the inquests for fear of incriminating himself.
He also refused to answer the door of his Singleton home to The Daily Telegraph this week.
"It's hard to believe he is still walking around,'' Jordan's mother Bernice Swales said yesterday.
"He won't face up to what he has done or answer questions about what he did.''
The Telegraph spotted Kennedy smoking in his backyard but rather than talk he hurried back inside his house where the windows with blinds are drawn and those without are covered with blankets.
It's believed he lives alone, rarely receiving visitors apart from a relative who mows the lawn. Many residents said he never spoke to anyone in surrounding streets and rarely left his house.
"I never see him," one woman said. "I'm astounded it's gone on for so long. It's terrible." Another resident said: "Sometimes you hear the mower in his backyard, but other than that, you never see him."
It's understood a group of drunken men, shouting "dog" smashed up Kennedy's car two years ago.
Earlier this month a second inquest found Jordan was deliberately administered antidepressant medication by Kennedy at a Singleton unit.
The first inquest in 2008 was stopped after Kennedy refused to answer questions and the Coroner recommended charges be laid.
In 2014 the DPP wrote to Kennedy saying they were not proceeding with the case without giving any explanation.
Earlier that year he was convicted of cruelty to animals when the RSPCA found he mistreated a number of his greyhounds.
Police set about building a stronger case, submitting new forensic evidence to the coroner.
It included tests on bath water samples. showing no detergent or soap was present - contradicting Kennedy's claim he had washed Jordan.
Expert witnesses also told the coroner the amount of drugs in the boy's system meant Jordan could not have walked to the bath, let alone have been playing and laughing as Kennedy claimed.
In April this year a new inquest was reconvened before Deputy Coroner Elaine Truscott and heard a raft of new evidence which she said proved there were serious inconsistencies with statements made by Kennedy to police.
On July 5 this year, Ms Truscott found Jordan died by poisoning from a drug administered by Kennedy sometime on the day he died.
She found much of his evidence in statements to police were unbelievable and lacked credibility.
The Telegraph understands NSW police are currently preparing a brief of evidence in the hope of charging Kennedy again.
"We welcome the Coroner's findings and continue to explore lines of inquiry raised throughout the inquest," Detective Superintendent Scott Cook, head of the NSW Homicide Squad, said yesterday.
"Strike Force Kyeama is very much ongoing and I am confident we will bring justice for Jordan and his family."
Ms Swales, 35, is also hopeful.
"I believe I will get justice for Jordan and I also know the police have not given up and will not give up.''
He put Jordan in the bath because he wet the bed and smelled "pissy".
No urine was found on the boy's clothes or bed.
Jordan hopped off his bed and walked on his own to the bath.
The amount of drugs in Jordan's bloodstream would have rendered him near comatose and unable to walk prior to entering the bath.
He used soap to wash the boy's back and hair.
No traces of soap or detergent were found in water samples from the bath.
Jordan was laughing and playing with plastic cups in the bath.
No plastic cups in the bath.
Nothing to police about having the drug Amitriptyline in the unit.
A packet of Amitriptyline hidden in Kennedy's wardrobe.
The reason he returned to the unit the day after Jordan died was to make sure the drugs were stored where kids could not reach them.
He returned to dispose of the drugs knowing they were important to the inquiry. Police already had them.
He took Jordan from the bath to a bedroom and tried to revive him after finding him unconscious.
Kennedy was not in the bedroom when Jordan's mother arrived and fibres in the bath showed Jordan was in the bedroom before the bath.
He had no idea how the drugs came to be in Jordan's system.
The only rational explanation for how Jordan had Amitriptyline in his system was that Kennedy must have administered it.