Diana Jane Hanbury death: Two people arrested over tragic death of two-year-old toddler at Mackay more than a year ago

The parents of a toddler who died tragically more than a year ago have been charged in her death.

The married couple, a 37-year-old man and 38-year-old woman from Mackay, were taken to Mackay police station in handcuffs by civilian officers in unmarked cars on Wednesday morning.

Police claim they caused the death of their two-year-old daughter, Diana Jane Hanbury, by ‘reckless indifference’ towards her.

The toddler died in Mackay Base Hospital on 29 December 2022 after she was rushed there by her mother and had been ill for the previous days.

At the time, police labeled the two-year-old’s death as suspicious and it became the subject of a ‘major police investigation’ called Operation Uniform Vauxhall.

The parents of two-year-old Diana Jane Hanbury (pictured) have been charged with her murder after she died at Mackay Base Hospital on 29 December 2022

The parents of two-year-old Diana Jane Hanbury (pictured) have been charged with her murder after she died at Mackay Base Hospital on 29 December 2022

Detective Superintendent Darrin Shadlow said the toddler was ‘already dead when she was presented at the hospital’.

“The police will allege that the two-year-old child victim was denied medical intervention from the parents, which subsequently caused the death of the child,” he said at a press conference on Wednesday.

“The child had been ill for some time.”

Both parents are expected to appear in the Mackay Magistrates Court on Thursday, each facing a single charge of murder.

The definition of murder in Queensland law was updated in 2019 to add ‘reckless indifference’.

The phrase allows a person to be charged with murder if ‘the conduct of the person was likely to endanger human life’, even without the intent to kill.

Information provided to police by the public, including neighbours, was ‘invaluable’ to investigators, Det Supt Shadlow said.

Investigators scoured her family’s home in North Makkay in the days following the death.

The parents were taken to Mackay police station in handcuffs on Wednesday morning

They were each charged with a single count of murder

Her parents (pictured) were taken to Mackay police station in unmarked cars on Wednesday morning and each charged with a single count of murder

Officers from the Mackay Child Protection Unit, Child Trauma Unit and Crime and Intelligence Command also assisted with investigations.

Queensland Police Acting Inspector Chris Eaton said the little girl had been ill in the days before her death.

‘Part of our investigation centers around those days leading up to the child’s death, and in particular the care provided to the child in those days,’ he said.

Police released CCTV footage from inside a supermarket and pharmacy in Andergrove, taken on the day of her death, in February 2023.

The footage shows a woman carrying the child on her back in a harness through the shops.

Police have urged anyone who saw her there to come forward.

More to come