Written by CNN Staff Writer
The 19-year-old Australian singer Faye Swetlik died from asphyxiation after she was allegedly abducted and strangled by a man who then shot her in the head, according to a report from New South Wales Police.
The inquest report released Monday confirmed that Swetlik, who was from Coogee, was last seen alive on November 20 last year, and that she was abducted when she got off a bus on St. Georges Road at Ryde, Sydney, at about 2:15 a.m. That night, she visited a friend in William Street.
At about 2:30 a.m., Swetlik was dropped off by a man she'd met that night. He disappeared when she got home. The inquest report added that the body of the singer had been recovered from bushland near a home in South Ryde, 80 kilometers (50 miles) from Swetlik's home.
Respective and conflicting accounts
The initial police reports had identified the owner of the house, Gavin Hart, as a "person of interest." However, the report said Hart was not a suspect.
According to police, surveillance footage from the St. Georges Road area showed a man putting Swetlik into the boot of a car. He then drove away from the area.
An image of the Australian singer Faye Swetlik was used in an appeal earlier this month after she was found dead. Credit: Apple Maps
However, an eyewitness at the house, watching from a window, told police he saw Swetlik get into the back of a car, similar to the one depicted in the video. He said he saw two men arrive on the street about 5 a.m. A crowd of between 100 and 200 people then gathered on the street, he told police.
Police wanted the public's help to identify who Swetlik had been seen with, and went to further lengths to warn people about the video.
Later the same day, police announced they were searching for a man from a white hatchback. Within hours, the man emerged, on foot, near William Street, and told officers that he had dropped Swetlik off, according to the report. He was photographed at a bus stop and later picked up by police.
The man, identified as a homeless man named Christian Salter, told police he had hitchhiked to William Street around 2:40 a.m. from his home in Central Station. He said he had arrived from Melbourne sometime between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m.
Police confirmed that Salter had no involvement in Swetlik's abduction.
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The official police cause of death was asphyxiation, with 513-100 determined to be a lethal amount of drugs by cross-correlation analysis.