4 Year Old Found Two Weeks After She Went Missing

Samantha Fowler

Four year old Cleo Smith was missing for 18 days after being abducted during a camping trip at Quobba Blowholes, Australia. She was found by police just after midnight on Wednesday, November 3rd, in the home of Carnarvon resident, Terrence Darrel Kelly. 


The Smith family went on a camping trip to Quobba Blowholes, Australia, but on October 16th, Cleo went missing. The family arrived at the campsite the night before she was abducted by Terrence Darrel Kelly. On the night Cleo was kidnapped, Cleo went to bed in the family’s tent around 8pm, just mere feet away from her stepdad, mom, and baby sister. Cleo’s mother, Ellie Smith, awoke to Cleo at one-thirty in the morning for a cup of water. That was the last time Ms. Smith saw Cleo until she was rescued by police. Cleo’s mother woke up at six in the morning with Cleo missing. According to BBC news, Elie Smith was very distraught by this occurrence and immediately called the police in tears, and begged them to find her daughter. 


Once the police realized this was an abduction case, they began a widespread search for Cleo using helicopters, drones, horses, and over 100 police personnel. The police went through almost 400 miles worth of roadside trash looking for any clues where Cleo would be. Superintendent detective Rod Wilde told BBC News, “We had to sift through a lot of information. The statements of the 100 people who were at the campsite, CCTV footage, data from phones, etc…After one week, the Western Australian government offered a A$1m ($750,000; £540,000) reward for information on Cleo’s whereabouts.”


How did the police find Cleo in a Random house 62 miles away from where she was kidnapped? Deputy Commissioner Blanch told BBC News, “It’s a big jigsaw. Combined with some early information, this was dogged, methodical police work.” The first big clue was that there was one car leaving the campsite at 3 am, so the police assumed that this was roughly the time that Cleo disappeared. CNN reported, the police also made a big map with the sex offenders in the area and where they were on that night. Police have not revealed how exactly they were able to find Cleo, but the only thing that matters is that she is now safe in her mother’s arms. 


Police are trying to figure out if there were other people in this abduction case. The officers will have expert psychologists interview her to figure out other important pieces of information that could be missing from the big picture. Most importantly, the family and Cleo will attend counseling sessions to help the Smiths heal from this distraught event.