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Tiny witness: Six-year-old girl 'very traumatised' after seeing her grandmother stabbed to death

Crime

A family has rallied around a “very traumatised” girl after the six-year-old witnessed her grandmother’s fatal stabbing outside a Queensland shopping centre.

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A 16-year-old boy has been charged with murder after 70-year-old grandmother Vyleen White died following a suspected carjacking on Saturday.

A family friend said Ms White had only recently begun driving again after overcoming an injury and had taken her granddaughter grocery shopping at Redbank Plains, west of Brisbane.

The child is believed to have raised the alarm after Ms White was stabbed in the chest at the shopping centre’s car park before her vehicle was allegedly stolen.

Ms White died at the scene a short time later. The girl was unharmed.

“Children process grief differently but the little one is obviously very traumatised,” family friend Katherine Lameree told AAP.

“We are endeavouring to get her all the help that she needs.

“It’s obviously still very raw.”

The family has been overwhelmed by the local community response to the tragedy.

Donations have begun arriving and more than $20,000 had been raised for the family by Tuesday afternoon on a GoFundMe page organised by Ms Lameree.

“I am not sure if they will ever be able to move forward,” Ms Lameree said.

“But at least these donated funds will assist in some way, ensure they won’t have to worry about some expenses and just let them grieve properly.”

Ms Lameree said the money raised would also go toward the little girl’s future.

“This is also for lifelong funds for her. We don’t know the extent or how long this is going to affect her,” she said.

“It is a stepping stone in the path to healing.”

Ms Lameree described Ms White as a “loving woman of faith, generous and very much loved by her family”.

“What has happened is shocking,” she said.

Five boys have been charged since the stabbing.

The 16-year-old boy charged with murder had a closed hearing in Ipswich Childrens Court on Tuesday.

Acting Magistrate Robert Turra refused the media’s application to be present at the boy’s first court hearing, saying it would be “prejudicial to the child”.

Ipswich Courthouse.
The court house attended on Tuesday by the boy charged with murder. (Jono Searle/AAP PHOTOS)
He was also charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle and stealing after being arrested at a Bellbird Park unit complex near Redbank Plains on Monday afternoon.

Three other boys were arrested on Monday – a 15-year-old and two aged 16.

They were all charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle and were set to appear in court on Tuesday.

Another 15-year-old was charged with the unlawful use of a motor vehicle and faced the Ipswich court in a closed hearing on Monday.

Several of the boys were accompanied by their parents when they were brought in, Queensland Police said.

“They (parents) condemn the behaviour and what’s occurred here,” Detective Acting Superintendent Heath McQueen told reporters on Tuesday.

“We understand the community sentiment from all sides.

“This is a horrendous crime.

“Now is the time for us to support Vyleen’s family through these terrible circumstances and ensure that we hold the perpetrators to account.”

He did not rule out more people being charged in relation to the stabbing.

Detectives had released CCTV footage of four youths in a vehicle allegedly stolen from Ms White.

“Sadly the motive was to steal a Hyundai Getz,” Det McQueen said on Monday.

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