This is the heartbreaking moment a close friend embraces Charlise Mutten’s biological father as he comes to terms with his little girl’s death.
Pictures emerged of Sydney gym owner Wayne Earl hugging his mate, Charlise’s father Scott Hensby, outside Hybrid Impact Training in Liverpool in the city’s south-west on Thursday.
The emotional gesture came two days after the body of Mr Hensby’s nine-year-old daughter was found inside a barrel near the Colo River in the NSW Blue Mountains.
Charlise’s stepfather Justin Stein, 31, has been charged with her murder.
In a cruel twist, Mr Hensby has been targeted by disgraceful trolls in the wake of his daughter’s death – something his friend Mr Earl hit out at.
A close friend of Charlise Mutten’s biological father Scott Hensby has offered him a supportive hug as he comes to terms with his little girl’s horrific death
Mr Earl told Daily Mail Australia he had known Scott Hensby since they were kids, when his family was living in Sydney.
Mr Earl, a Muay Thai and K1 fighter who owns Hybrid Impact Training, said, ‘I grew up with Scott in Sydney – (we were) childhood mates.’
He agreed some of the comments posted on Mr Hensby’s Facebook page were appalling but said ‘that’s social media’.
The gym owner shared the picture of the friends hugging online and praised the father’s strength in a time of unimaginable grief.
‘Hugging a mate who just lost a child is the toughest hug I’ve ever given someone… this bloke is stronger than me that’s for sure,’ he wrote.
The father on Wednesday posted a touching tribute to his daughter on social media, saying she had ‘captured the hearts of the nation’.
‘I love you so much. I miss you every day!’ he wrote.
‘We will get the answers for you baby, and we will honour you properly. This is not the end of you or your story Charlise.’
Homicide detectives have yet to identify a motive behind the alleged murder.
Charlise is pictured with her biological father. The friend Wayne Earl agreed some of the comments which had been posted on Mr Hensby’s Facebook page were appalling but said ‘that’s social media’
Homicide detectives are still struggling to find a motive for the alleged murder of nine-year-old schoolgirl Charlise Mutten
Stein, who was educated at the prestigious Cranbrook School in Sydney’s eastern suburbs and is engaged to Charlise’s mother Kallista Mutten, has been charged with her murder.
NSW Police homicide squad detectives are still trying to establish why Charlise was in the care of Stein between January 11 and January 12, when she died.
The girl and her mother had been staying at the Riviera Ski caravan park at Lower Portland on the Hawkesbury River, about a 90 minute drive from where Stein lived at Mount Wilson.
Detectives have yet to identify a motive behind the alleged murder after charging the girl’s stepfather Justin Stein, 31, (pictured) over her death on Wednesday
Antiques dealer Annemie Stein (above) defended her accused son Justin Stein and said she didn’t approve of his relationship with Charlise’s mother Kallista Mutten which she called ‘a headache’
The girl and her mother had been staying at the Riviera Ski caravan park at Lower Portland on the Hawkesbury River, about a 90 minute drive from where Stein lived at Mount Wilson (pictured, a cabin at the caravan park)
It’s understood Charlise and Ms Mutten had been spending time at the caravan park and at Stein’s luxurious property Wildenstein (pictured, boats and a jetski at the caravan park)
It’s understood Charlise and Ms Mutten had been spending time at the caravan park and at Stein’s luxurious property Wildenstein.
Detectives hope Ms Mutten can shed light on why her daughter was alone in Stein’s care the night she was allegedly murdered.
However, they have been unable to interview her due to her mental state, and she remains in hospital under close medical supervision.
Ms Mutten – who is pregnant with Stein’s baby – suffered a ‘medical episode’ about the time she contacted police on January 14 to say her daughter was missing.
Police allege Charlise Mutten, nine, was murdered and her body encased in a barrel which was towed for hours in a boat before being dumped on a lonely riverbank in dense bushland
A cabin at the Riviera Ski Garden caravan park Ms Mutten had been staying at on Hawkesbury River
A view of several cabins set up along the waterfront of the Hawkesbury River at the caravan park
As police continue to build a picture of what happened, residents claimed they saw Stein with Charlise and Ms Mutten at the park in the days before she was reported missing.
Detectives were seen taping off an area of the caravan park earlier this week, before leaving the scene carrying evidence bags.
It comes after Stein’s mother defended her son and made extraordinary comments aimed at the nine-year-old’s biological mum, calling the situation ‘a headache’.
Annemie Stein revealed she didn’t approve of the whirlwind relationship between her son – who went to Cranbrook, one of Sydney’s most elite private schools – and the girl’s mother Ms Mutten.
Social media posts show the pair shared a rapid romance, announcing they were in a relationship about a year after Ms Mutten, a former ice addict who has served jail time, walked free from prison.
‘You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make them drink, or choose their partners, and sometimes it ends up in a headache like this one,’ Ms Stein told the Telegraph.
The area next to the Colo River (pictured) where Justin Stein allegedly dumped Charlise’s body in a barrel five days before the nine-year-old’s decomposed remains were found
Kallista Mutten and Justin Stein (pictured) had a whirlwind romance before becoming engaged and inviting her daughter on the tragic trip to Mount Wilson
The 56-year-old said it would be painful for any parent to have a child go through what her son was experiencing because ‘parents know their children’.
Mrs Stein defended her privately-educated son revealing he had a ‘tortured life’ despite his wealthy upbringing.
On Wednesday, the alleged killer appeared in Central Local Court where he did not apply for bail and it was formally refused.
His barrister told magistrate Robert Williams that while on remand in prison, Stein needed supplies of medication which he had been taking in high dosage for many years to treat ‘mental health problems’.
The antipsychotic medications are used to treat bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and autism.