Police identify van involved in hit-and-run death
POLICE have released images of a vehicle they believe may have been involved in the death of Mullumbimby man Tim Watkins last month.
Mr Watkins, 22, was found dead by a passing motorist in the early hours of Sunday, June 23, on Wilsons Creek Road, Wilsons Creek, about 9km south-west of Mullumbimby.
Police believe he was the victim of a hit-and-run incident while he was riding a push-bike.
Police have released two example images of the van they are looking for, a late 1990s model Mitsubishi Delica L400, and are appealing for anyone with information about its whereabouts or the driver to come forward.
"We believe this vehicle was involved in the crash," Detective Chief Inspector Brendon Cullen said.
"We acknowledge people make mistakes but failing to stop after mistakes and render assistance is a deliberate act and we are moving towards identifying the person responsible."
At a press conference held outside the Tweed Heads Police Station on Tuesday morning, Detective Chief Inspector Cullen said he was hopeful that the driver involved in Watkins death would come forward.
"I directly appeal to that person who was driving to come forward and provide some solace to grieving family and friends and to release themselves of the burden that is upon them in this matter," he said.
A GoFundMe page was set up in the wake of Mr Watkins death for his family, with the aim of raising $20,000.
When Tuesday's press conference was held, $41,059 had been raised with a donation of $1000 being made over the weekend.
Mr Watkins was heavily involved in both the rugby union and rugby league clubs in Mullumbimby.
At Tim's memorial earlier this month, Giants committee member Owen King also appealed for anyone with information to come forward, as Tim's family continues to grieve.
"If anybody has got any information that will assist the police, we just ask them to come forward," he said.
"It might only be minute in your eyes but anything at all will help the detectives try and solve this matter."
All Northern Rivers Regional Rugby League games between Mullumbimby and Casino which were scheduled on the day of Mr Watkins death were cancelled.
Anyone who may have noticed a similar vehicle in the area at the time or have any additional information about this incident can contact Tweed Heads Police Station on (07)55069499 or call Crime Stoppers on 1800333000.