'I've Got You, Bubby': Australian Police Release Rescue Audio Of 4-Year-Old Cleo Smith
Australian police on Thursday released a heart-wrenching audio tape of the rescue of 4-year-old Cleo Smith in a locked home after she vanished weeks earlier on a camping trip with her family.
“We’ve got her! We’ve got her!” someone can be heard saying on the tape.
“I’ve got you, Bubby. You’re all right,” says another voice.
An officer asks: “What’s your name? What’s your name, sweetheart?”
The little girl responds hesitantly but in a clear voice: “M-my name is Cleo.” The officer answers with obvious relief: “Your name is Cleo.”
Western Australia Deputy Police Commissioner Col Blanch told Perth Radio 6PR: “When she said, ‘My name is Cleo,’ I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house.”
On videotape, the little girl can be seen in an officer’s arms, smiling slightly and nodding when a detective asks her if she’s all right. “We’re going to take you to see your mummy and daddy, OK?” he adds.
Cleo was found in the home Wednesday, 18 days after she vanished along with her sleeping bag from her family’s tent in the remote Blowholes Shacks campground, about 50 miles from their coastal home in Carnarvon in Western Australia.
The house she was rescued from was also in Carnarvon, just minutes from her family’s home, according to police. The man suspected of taking her wasn’t home when police broke in. Cleo had been playing with dolls with the light on inside a room when police arrived, according to investigators.
Terrence Darrell Kelly, 36, appeared in court Thursday to face a number of charges, including the forcible abduction of a child, Australia’s public broadcaster reported. His next court date is in early December. He’s being held without bail.
Police found the little girl after tracking down a tip from another camper who reported seeing a car speed away from the campsite early on the morning Cleo disappeared.
She returned home later Wednesday from a hospital checkup with her mother and stepfather, Ellie Smith and Jake Gliddon, to pink balloons and a huge “Welcome Home, Cleo” sign.
Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan said he met with Cleo and her family, and he described her as “very well adjusted,” especially considering her ordeal.
“She has done a bit of sleeping and a lot of eating, a lot of lying around and cuddling,” McGowan said.
A detective visiting the home said it was “heartwarming to see that she’s still bubbly and she’s laughing,” The Associated Press reported.
“Our family is whole again,” her mother said on social media.
Listen to the full audiotape up top.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.
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