A 4-year-old child has been recovered alive after going missing from an Australian campground last month.
According to Australia’s ABC News, Cleo Smith went missing on October 16th while camping with her family at the Blowholes Shacks campground in Western Australia.
When her family awoke about 6 a.m., they discovered the tent had been unzipped higher than the youngster could reach. According to the news outlet, Cleo was nowhere to be located. Authorities quickly ruled out the possibility that she had walked off, opting to explore the assumption that she had been kidnapped.
Cleo’s mother resorted to Instagram in the days following her missing to make a poignant appeal.
She wrote on Instagram, “Every day is getting harder without my shining bright light. Today she’s missed Halloween with her family – her cousins, aunties uncles nannas, and pop but most of all her parents and baby sister.”
“She needs us and we need her.”
— 7NEWS Perth (@7NewsPerth) November 3, 2021
Cleo was discovered about 1 a.m. local time on Wednesday in a closed residence in Carnarvon, roughly 62 miles from the campground where she went missing, said Deputy Commissioner Col Blanch in a video statement. According to ABC News, the residence was only a few miles from where the 4-year-old resided with her family.
Deputy Commissioner Col Blanch declared, “It’s my privilege to announce that in the early hours of this morning, the Western Australia Police Force rescued Cleo Smith.
“One of the officers picked her up into his arms and asked her ‘what’s your name?'”
The girl then answered, “My name is Cleo”.
“One of the officers picked her up into his arms and asked her: ‘What’s your name?'”
“She said – my name is Cleo.” @WA_Police say missing four-year-old Cleo Smith has been found alive and well, after she was rescued from a locked house in Canarvon, 900km north of Perth. pic.twitter.com/LuM9ZRXGMH
— 10 News First Perth (@10NewsFirstPER) November 2, 2021
Cleo seemed “physically OK” when she was discovered, according to police. She was sent to the hospital to be checked for injuries. At the moment, the inquiry is still underway.
Blanch announced that Cleo had been reunited with her family.
During a press conference on Wednesday, police claimed a local 36-year-old male had been arrested in connection with her disappearance. There have been no charges filed in connection with the crime, and authorities have not discovered any further suspects at this time.
“This is the outcome we all hoped and prayed for,” he remarked. “It’s the outcome we’ve achieved because of some incredible police work.”