Cleo Smith disappearance a likely ‘opportunistic’ abduction


The police officer leading the search for missing four-year-old Cleo Smith says her suspected abduction from a remote West Australian campsite is more than likely an opportunistic incident rather than a planned event.

Superintendent Rod Wilde, who is in charge of the 100-officer strong Taskforce RODIA spoke about his theory as the investigation entered day 18.

Cleo Smith has been missing for 18 days.

Cleo Smith has been missing for 18 days. Credit:Instagram

“I think it’s more than likely an opportunistic-type event,” he told 6PR.

“So we know they [Cleo’s family] got there that night … it was getting dark.

Cleo went missing from a remote campsite in WA.

Cleo went missing from a remote campsite in WA.Credit:Ellie Smith Instagram

“So that would have been limited opportunity for people to observe Cleo at that time. We’ve stated that Cleo woke up at 1.30am was given a drink by her mum, and then at 6.30am, or shortly after six, she was gone.”

Cleo’s family – which includes her mum Ellie Smith, step-father Jake Gliddon, and baby sister Isla – arrived at the Quobba Blowholes camp some 70 kilometres north of Carnarvon on October 15 at about 6pm.

CCTV from a nearby shack to where the family pitched their tent and video footage from the parents’ phone, which has been geolocated by police to confirm it was taken at the camp, has confirmed Cleo was at the site.

Superintendent Wilde said there was no evidence to suggest the parents had any involvement in Cleo’s disappearance.

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