Cleo Smith: Four-year-old found weeks after going missing after police break into house in Australia
While there are still many unknowns over the Cleo Smith case but her family and the whole of Australia are just happy she is safe, Chloe Keedy reports
Four-year-old Cleo Smith who went missing more than two weeks ago in Australia in a suspected abduction has been rescued after police broke into a house and found her "alive and well".
Western Australia Police said they found the child after officers broke their way into a locked house in Carnarvon at around 1am.
Cleo has been reunited with her family.
Reacting on social media after her daughter was found, Cleo's mother Ellie Smith reshared an image of her smiling daughter which was posted by a news channel, confirming Cleo had been located.
“Our family is whole again,” Ms Smith wrote beneath the post with along with a love heart emoji.
Watch the moment Cleo is found by police and told she would be "taken to see her mummy and daddy"
In a press conference, Western Australia Police Commissioner Chris Dawson held up a photo of Cleo waving from a hospital bed with a smile on her face following the rescue.
Mr Dawson told reporters it was "a really special day" and thanked the Western Australia Police Force.
'What a great day'
One of the four police officers who saved Cleo Smith also spoke during the conference, detailing the moments of the rescue.
Detective Senior Sergeant Cameron Blaine recounted how the officers forced open the door of a house in Carnarvon, in Western Australia, to find the little girl sitting there, before he asked what her name was.
Cleo called out 'mummy' followed by big hugs, kisses and lots of tears when she was reunited with her family following the rescue
Mr Blaine also described Cleo as "a little energiser bunny" after seeing her again hours after the rescue.
"How she has that much energy, I wish I did, I am about ready to go to sleep. Very sweet, energetic girl."
Deputy Commissioner Col Blanch announced that Cleo Smith has been found 'alive and well'
In a statement, Deputy Commissioner Col Blanch said that after police officers entered they house "they found little Cleo in one of the rooms.
"One of the officers picked her up into his arms and asked her ‘what’s your name? ’She said - ‘My name is Cleo'."
Blanch continued: “This is the outcome we all hoped and prayed for.
“It’s the outcome we’ve achieved because of some incredible police work. I want to thank Cleo’s parents, the Western Australian community and the many volunteers.
“And of course, I want to thank my colleagues in the Western Australia Police Force.”
Western Australia Police Commissioner Chris Dawson confirmed that a 36-year-old man from Carnarvon was in custody and that four police executed a search warrant in the early hours of this morning.
'I've got to say, it brought a tear to the eye'.
Cleo disappeared on October 16 while camping with her family at the Blowholes campsite in Macleod, near Carnarvon.
She had woken up around 1.30am that morning and asked her mum Ellie Smith for some water.
When Ms Smith woke up at around 6am, she found the flap to the tent open and Cleo and her sleeping bag missing.
Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison was among those who reacted with relief to the news of her being found, thanking police for their involvement in the extensive search for the little girl.
"I just want to say how thankful I am that Cleo is home and that she's safe," Mr Morrison told reporters.
'I just thank God that Cleo is home and that she is safe'.
"To Ellie and Jake (parents): this is every parent's worst nightmare and the fact that that nightmare has come to an end and our worst fears were not realised, is just a huge relief, and a moment for great joy.
"And I want to thank, particularly, all of the police and all of those who were involved in making sure that Cleo is safe", he added.
A reward of more than £540,000 had been offered for information that led to Cleo's discovery.
Land and sea search teams - involving more than 100 officers, volunteers, and army reservists - had scoured the area surrounding the Blowholes campsite where Cleo went missing.
The Labor leader, Anthony Albanese, meanwhile, said it was “such happy news”. “To all those who tirelessly searched for this little girl, you deserve our thanks,” he tweeted.