Cleo Smith: Officer Reveals What The Missing 4-Year-Old Said In The Monumental Moment He Discovered Her
The police officer who found missing four-year-old Cleo Smith has called her rescue the best moment of his career.
Cleo was found in a locked house in Carnarvon, Western Australia shortly after midnight on Wednesday, November 3, more than two weeks after going missing from her family’s tent at a campsite close to the town.
Now, one of the four police officers who helped break into the house to rescue her has told of the moment they realised they’d found her alive and well.
Detective Sergeant Cameron Blaine told reporters at a press conference:
I just wanted to be absolutely sure that, it certainly looks like Cleo, I wanted to be sure it was her.
I said, ‘what is your name?’ She didn’t answer, I said ‘what’s your name?’ and she didn’t answer again. So I asked her a third time and then she looked at me and said, ‘My name is Cleo.’
Asked whether finding Cleo would be the highlight of his career, Blain replied, ‘Without a doubt,’ adding that ‘we all wanted to take turns holding her’ as they took her safely back to her parents.
In separate comments reported by 9News Australia, Western Australia Police Commissioner Chris Dawson said he became emotional upon seeing the bodycam footage of her rescue, telling reporters, ‘It’s burned into my memory for life. You cannot look at that and not feel it in your heart. Unbelievable moment.’
Although believed to be physically unharmed, Cleo was taken to hospital for further tests and evaluations, with Western Australia Police sharing an image of her smiling and waving while eating an ice pop in her hospital bed.
Cleo was discovered 74km away from the campsite where she vanished, but only 3km from her home, with police officers raiding the Carnarvon house after receiving a ‘sudden tip-off’ on Tuesday night.
A 36-year-old man has been arrested in connection with Cleo’s alleged abduction.
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Topics: News, abduction, Australia, Cleo Smith, western australia