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(AUSTRALIA) JUST IN: Missing Cleo FOUND Report: A criminology expert says old-fashioned police work and an early million-dollar reward helped locate missing four-year-old Cleo Smith, whose 18-day disappearance broke “all the rules” of a typical child abduction case #AceNewsDesk report

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#AceBreakingNews says GREAT NEWS: According to an ABC News Report TODAY: Cleo Smith case ‘breaks all the rules’ after 4-year-old is found safe after 18 days in Carnarvon

Posted 1h ago

Cleo Smith wearing a red jumper standing outside and smiling for a photo.
Cleo Smith was found safe and well in Carnarvon on Wednesday morning. (Facebook: Ellie Smith)

Xanthé Mallett, an associate professor of criminology at the University of Newcastle, said the happy ending to the case was extremely rare.

“Although we all hoped for the best, we were all fearing the worst. Nineteen days is an extraordinarily long time for a child to be missing and to be found safe,” she said.

“This case really breaks all the rules.

“It’s going to be interesting as we go forward … as the police release information to tell us what the motive was … because this does not fit the pattern of a normal child abduction case.”

Police have hailed Cleo’s discovery as “one of the most remarkable days in policing in Western Australia”.

She was found alone in a house in the coastal town of Carnarvon, about 900 kilometres north of Perth.

A 36-year-old man is being questioned by police. 

Dr Mallett said police officers faced significant challenges in their search for the girl, with limited technology to rely on due to the remote location.

“This comes down to really good, old-fashioned police work, getting out there in the community and talking to people … but also, the tactic of bringing in that million-dollar reward was integral,” she said.

“We wouldn’t normally expect that [reward] until maybe years or even decades later.

“That was a very targeted move and a very intelligent move and maybe reflects the fact police have learnt from mistakes in other cases previously… and decided to throw everything at this investigation early on, with amazing results.”

A woman with short blond hair, white t-shirt looks at books in a library
Dr Xanthé Mallet has urged the public to avoid commenting online about the case. (ABC Capricornia: Inga Stünzner)

Dr Mallett is urging everyone to exercise caution when commenting on the case online.

“Say whatever you like at home but don’t post it on social media,” she said.

“We’ve had cases that have been jeopardised by people posting things.

“There will be intense media and public scrutiny now but we have to allow the justice system to do its job and not prejudice that procedure going forward.”

Timeline of police activity October 16, 2021

6:23am: Cleo’s mother Ellie Smith first called triple zero

Just before 6:30am: The first police car was dispatched from Carnarvon police station to the Blowholes

6:41am: The second police car was dispatched from Carnarvon

7:10am: The first police car arrived at Blowholes campground, the second shortly afterwards

7:26am: Police created a protected forensic area around the family tent

7:53am: police requested a drone operator from Geraldton

7:34am: A third police vehicle was dispatched from Carnarvon to the scene

Just after 8:00am:  Family and friends arrived at Blowholes to help with the search.

8:00am: Police attended the family home in Carnarvon, then deployed to the scene and began stopping vehicles near the search area

8:11am: Police requested SES attend Blowholes campground

8:09am: A helicopter from a local company arrived at the scene and started searching.

8:20am: A third police vehicle from Carnarvon arrived at Blowholes

8:24am: Police incident controller Inspector Jon Munday made arrangements to leave Geraldton and travel to Carnarvon and take command. A mobile policing facility accompanied him

Around this time police airwing and volunteer marine search and rescue were contacted

8:34am: Carnarvon police set up a roadblock at the entrance to the Blowholes campground

9:25am: Nine SES crew arrived and began searching the area

9:30am: Carnarvon detectives sat down with Ellie Smith and remained with her for the rest of the day.

11:00am: homicide detectives attached to Major Crime division were deployed by road

1:00pm: Homicide officers and search experts from the emergency operations unit left Perth in the police airwing and officers in Perth were assembled to provide support from Perth-based office.

3:00pm: Those officers arrived at Carnarvon

Source: Homicide detective Rod Wilde in Carnarvon, October 29 2021

#AceNewsDesk report ……….Published: Nov.03: 2021:

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