Australia

Tiahleigh Palmer’s killer found unresponsive in jail cell

The man convicted of killing his foster daughter Tiahleigh Palmer is fighting for his life in a Brisbane hospital after he was found unresponsive in his jail cell. In 2018 Rick Thorburn pleaded guilty to murdering his 12-year-old foster daughter Tiahleigh and was sentenced to life in prison.On Saturday morning, he was taken from the…

The man convicted of killing his foster daughter Tiahleigh Palmer is fighting for his life in a Brisbane hospital after he was found unresponsive in his jail cell.

In 2018 Rick Thorburn pleaded guilty to murdering his 12-year-old foster daughter Tiahleigh and was sentenced to life in prison.

On Saturday morning, he was taken from the Wolston Correctional Centre to the Princess Alexandra Hospital after officers found him unconscious.

A Princess Alexandra Hospital spokeswoman said Thorburn remained in a critical but stable condition in the Intensive Care Unit.

Thorburn is two years into his sentence and is not eligible for parole until September 2036.

Tiahleigh was first placed into foster care in 2019 and in January 2015 the Thorburn’s became her full-time carers.

Tiahleigh was reported missing in October 2015, and the Thorburns spent days assisting police in their search efforts after they claimed she had “run away”.

Thorburn killed the schoolgirl sometime between 8pm and 10pm on October 29, 2015, after his 18-year-old son Trent confessed to having had sex with the 12-year-old. He further confessed he feared Tiahleigh was pregnant.

After killing Tiahleigh, Thorburn removed most of her clothing and dumped her body in the nearby Pimpama River, telling his family he had done it to protect his son from going to prison as a “sex offender”.

The next day she was reported missing after the family told police she had not returned home from school.

Thorburn’s wife Julene, and sons Josh and Trent were jailed for perjury and attempting to pervert the course of justice. Trent also served time for incest.

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