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May 14, 2021

Ross sentenced to 40 years for Tanilla’s murder

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Warren Ross, convicted of the murder of toddler Tanilla Warrick Deaves, is escorted to a prison van in Sydney, Friday (May 30, 2014). Photo AAP Image/Dean Lewins
Warren Ross, convicted of the murder of toddler Tanilla Warrick-Deaves, is escorted to a prison van in Sydney, Friday (May 30, 2014). Photo AAP Image/Dean Lewins

The murderer of toddler Tanilla Warrick-Deaves was finally sentenced to 40 years jail on Friday in Sydney’s Supreme Court as her father, Ballina-based Adrian Warrick, looked on.

Warren Ross, Tanilla’s stepfather, will be eligible for parole in 30 years.

Tanilla’s family and supporters were disappointed that Ross was spared a life sentence after Justice Stephen Rothman told the court her killing was ‘not [quite] in the worst category’.

Nevertheless he admitted that ‘No person with any modicum of humanity could not be moved by the circumstances of this murder.’

Last year a jury ruled that Ross had repeatedly tortured his two-year-old stepdaughter for months ahead of her death, flogging her with a power cord, pushing her head into a shower stall, putting her under cold water, holding her over the toilet, calling her a ‘‘black dog’’ and causing her to bash her head on a linen cupboard door.

When she finally lapsed into unconsciousness, Tanilla was left in her pram for two days without medical attention.

Her mother, Donna Deaves, has already been sentenced to two years jail for manslaughter over her role in the child’s killing.

Ms Deaves failed to take her daughter to a hospital, saying she was terrified of Ross.

The judge said Ross showed no remorse, continuing to claim Tanilla had injured herself on a backyard trampoline and in a fall from a chest of drawers.

As he was led away, the unrepentant murderer slung a final insult at Tanilla’s father, shouting ‘See you in jail, Adrian’.

Police had to keep the Ross and Warrick families apart as he was led out of the courtroom.

Read the full story at SMH


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  1. Here is a case where we need to look at what we are doing to our future.
    This man will cost us money to keep in prison, he will suffer badly at the hands of others in prison, people will spend time and money and heartache attempting to rehabilitate him and once he is released and the victims involved will live in terror of his return.
    Should there not be a more humane solution for all?

    • He so richly deserves to suffer the way he made that baby suffer. Too bad he’s so evil and caused an innocent’s death and landed himself in prison. He deserves every bad thing that happens to him


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