Charges Still Not Laid After Cleo Smith's Dramatic Rescue

Police sift through 18 days of evidence

Article heading image for Charges Still Not Laid After Cleo Smith's Dramatic Rescue

Cleo Smith is alive and well. Credit: WA Police, Twitter

Little Cleo Smith has spent her first night at home after being rescued from an eighteen-day abduction. 

The little girl was found in a locked Carnarvon home at 1 am on Wednesday morning. 

Police said they acted in "a heartbeat" after the “needle in the haystack” breakthrough came late on Tuesday evening. 

“We have to be careful talking about too much of the detail, suffice to say there was not anything in terms of a tip-off or some clairvoyant or anything like that, it was just good, hard, police grind work. Some analysts did some incredible work back in Perth and that led to what was the breakthrough.”

- Police Commissioner Col Blanch

A 36-year-old man believed to be the only suspect in the abduction remains in custody but charges are still yet to be laid. 

Police Commissioner Col Blanch says police are still working through eighteen days of evidence and firming up the case. 

“As you know for eighteen days we’ve been collecting information. It’s a massive task ahead of us. However we’re just making sure we dot all the i’s cross all the t’s and when that time comes we’ll certainly everyone know,” he said.

Investigators are working on determining what exactly happened over the last eighteen days of the child’s disappearance. Cleo Smith vanished from her family’s tent at the Quobba Blowholes campground near Carnarvon on October 16. 

Meanwhile, Police have released footage of the incredible moment she was rescued. 


Detective Sergeant Cameron Blaine described the wonderful phone call the team made to Cleo's parents whilst on their way to reunite them with Cleo. The family liaison, Detective Sergeant Hutchinson said to them, “We've got someone here who wants to speak to you."

Detective Blaine told reporters the parents were “Just absolutely surprised and they were ecstatic.” 

Little detail has been provided on the suspect. What we do know is that he has no connection to the family and neighbours have described him as “lonely” and “quiet”. The man was allegedly spotted buying nappies last Monday at a Woolworths which they thought was odd given that he does not have children. He has reportedly been taken to hospital a second time following his arrest after banging his head against the wall in a police cell. 

Cleo’s story has captured the entire nation and has made top stories across the world in America, The UK, Europe, Ireland and Brazil. 

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Hit News Team

3 November 2021

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