An Aboriginal mother charged with manslaughter after her two sons drowned in a river will be kept behind bars for her own safety.
Leanne Chyrsilla Eatts, who is charged with 14 offences, including two counts of manslaughter, appeared in Townsville Magistrates Court, in Queensland, on Saturday for a bail hearing, Courier Mail reported.
Eatts broke down as she listened to the charges pending against her.
Her two sons, Barak Austral, five, and Jhulio Sariago, three, were found in a deep section of the fast-flowing Ross River, in Townsville, on February 26.
Leanne Chyrsilla Eats (pictured) appeared in court on Saturday and was denied bail for her own safety
Tragic: Barak Austral (left), five, and Jhulio Sariago (right), three, were found dead in the Ross River near Cranbrook in Townsville in February
The court heard it was Eatts’ ‘lack of supervision of the boys’ that resulted in the ‘preventable tragedy of their death’.
Police prosecutor Kellie Mythen told the court Eatts should remain behind bars to ‘keep her safe from the outraged community’.
Following an extensive five-week investigation, Ms Mythen said police had 156 statements from witnesses who observed Eatts’ ‘lack of supervision’, the publication reported.
The boys’ mother Leanne Eatts (left) was arrested in relation to the death of her two sons on Friday
The boys were found dead in a river after they were seen walking there on CCTV
On Friday, police were also informed Eatts was recovering from a heavy night of drinking when her two sons left home and later drowned.
Barak and Jhulio went missing from their Brett St home on February 25 – sparking one of the biggest ever search operations in Townsville with up to 100 policemen, rescuers and residents joining in.
The boys were found submerged in the Ross River in Townsville just before 7am on February 26.
Detective Senior Sergeant Dave Miles said their investigation showed the death of the two young boys was preventable.
‘This investigation centres around the care of these young boys and what led to their tragic passing. This is a catastrophic result for this family and it is a preventable tragedy,’ he said.
‘There is no way that these boys should be been able to go down to the river. Their deaths, under appropriate supervision and management by a parent, would have been averted.’
Police will allege Ms Eatts was ‘solely responsible for the failure of these two young boys.’
Detective Senior Sergeant Dave Miles (pictured) said the charges related to the care and responsibility a parent should have for children
Two young Aboriginal brothers Barak (left) and Jhulio (right) were found dead in a river after they went missing from their home
CCTV footage tragically shows the last time the boys were seen alive, with Barak wearing his school uniform (in red shirt on the right)
Townsville residents leave tributes for the two young boys who drowned in the river
At the time, Eatts made a series of desperate posts to social media asking for help to find her boys.
‘Mum is missing you boys so much,’ she posted to Facebook.
‘My two babies have been missing since 5.45. I got eight police cars at my house and everyone on foot looking for them please keep a close eye out for them on the streets… they just walked off. Please help Townsville.
‘I am so tired and empty.’
When the bodies were found, the boys’ aunt Ros Eatts said: ‘Everyone’s in shock and total devastation. I’m totally gutted. Leeann, the mum, is inconsolable.’
Eatts described her sons as ‘inseparable’.
She said: ‘They were nine days apart, Barak born on 17 May 2013 and Jhulio born 8 May 2015, and they died on the same day – Jhulio was born the day after my birthday,’ she said.
‘Jhulio was so smart – he knew everything. He was a good kid, so loveable, lovely little face and beautiful nature… I’m going to miss them.
Up to 100 policemen, rescuers and residents joined a frantic search for the boys
Following the boys’ deaths hundreds of people attended a memorial service on the banks of the Ross River on March 3.
Now questions are being raised about the donations made by family, friends and members of the public following the boys’ deaths.
Mr Miles said the majority of the $13,000 raised from GoFundMe was used to transport the boys’ bodies to their hometown in the Northern Territory, Townsville Bulletin reported.
‘My understanding is a lot of that money was used to repatriate the boys’ bodies back to Darwin and pay for their funeral,’ he said.
‘I don’t think that anyone in the community would have any particular issue with that, having regard to what it was used for.’
A spokesman for GoFundMe told the publication that if donations are not used for the intended purpose, then they will be protected.
‘Donors may receive a refund when they donate to a campaign and the campaign organiser or beneficiary commits a ‘misuse’,’ the spokesman said.
‘(The term ‘misuse’ includes circumstances where) the campaign organiser or beneficiary is formally charged with a crime directly related to their actions, omissions, and/or misrepresentations made by that individual in the campaign.’
An amber alert was issued after the boys went missing from their home in the suburb of Cranbrook about 5.30pm
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