Toddler at centre of police hunt

A TODDLER sparked a major police operation in Ely yesterday morning (Wednesday) when he wandered out of his home while his mother was asleep in bed. Ten officers were sent out to a housing estate in a bid to track down his mother after the two-year-old, w

A TODDLER sparked a major police operation in Ely yesterday morning (Wednesday) when he wandered out of his home while his mother was asleep in bed.

Ten officers were sent out to a housing estate in a bid to track down his mother after the two-year-old, who had gone to a nearby park, did not give officers his name.

But she only discovered he was missing when police walked through her open front door and woke her up to tell her he was safe.

They had armed themselves with a Polaroid snap of the youngster to carry out door to door inquiries.


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Local radio stations were also put on alert and an appeal was prepared for breakfast news slots.

The drama began at 6.30am when the boy managed to unlock the front door of his house in Windmill Close while his mother was in bed upstairs.

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He walked out of the house, crossed busy St John's Road and into Kingsley Walk to the play park.

A local resident found him in the park and immediately dialled 999 saying a young child had been found alone.

The child was taken to Ely Police Station where a major search was mounted to try to reunite him with his family.

As officers called at houses on the estate they noticed the home in Windmill Close where the front door was still open and found the youngster's mother still asleep and unaware that he had wandered off.

He was reunited with her an hour and 15 minutes after he was found and radio stations were told before they had time to broadcast the appeal.

Resident Lindsey Newton, 24, was visited by the police during their search at her boyfriend's home in St John's Road.

She said: "It was around 7.30am and a police officer knocked on the door. He produced a Polaroid photo of the child and asked if I recognised him.

"I told the officer I wasn't local and couldn't help. When I left the house 25 minutes later there was a police car parked near the school."

A Cambridgeshire police spokes-man said: "We were called at 6.30am by someone who said they had found a young child wandering in the street on his own. We sent officers to try to find his house and house-to-house inquiries were made.

"Officers found the front door of the house still open and the mother was very shocked. All the doors and gates were locked but the boy had still managed to let himself out of the house.

"His mother was given some advice on the extra measures she could take to secure her home.

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