Cleo Smith podcast: Episode five: The second interview, the tent and a night at the Blowholes

Staff writersThe West Australian
Cleo Smith.
Camera IconCleo Smith. Credit: Facebook/Facebook

It was one of the biggest questions on the public’s mind as the search for Cleo approached two weeks - how did her mum and stepdad not hear the tent being unzipped as they slept right next to the four-year-old?

In episode five, shedding light on days 11 and 12 of the little girl’s disappearance, reporter Jackson Barrett and Producer Sandra Di Girolamo have possible answers.

Jackson was sent up to Carnarvon to cover the search, and even spent a night at the Blowholes, while Sandra produced a heartbreaking second interview with Ellie and Jake.

Both spent a significant time at the Blowholes, and both said the wind and sound of the ocean crashing overpowered almost any other sounds around the campsite.


As the search for Cleo stretched into 12 days, Cleo’s desperate parents faced the camera a second time to plea for their daughter’s safe return.

As the producer of that interview, Sandra told of how tired, heartbroken and desperate the parents were, and why she thought Ellie would never give up hope of finding her daughter.

** ONLINE OUT UNTIL AFTER AIRED ON FLASHPOINT ** FLASHPOINT exclusive interview with Ellie Smith and Jake Gliddon, the mother and step father of missing 4 year old Cleo Smith.
Camera IconEllie Smith and Jake Gliddon pleaded for Cleo’s safe return. Credit: FLASHPOINT/FLASHPOINT

As that heartbreaking interview aired, Cleo’s disappearance began to gain international attention, especially in the UK, where the parallels between Cleo’s case and that of missing girl Madeline McCann were too similar to ignore.

Senior broadcast journalist with the BBC, Laurence Zadvriew tells Host Natalie Bonjolo how Cleo’s disappearance, coupled with the backdrop of the vast, arid Australian outback gripped the minds and hearts of those all over the world.

Join Host Natalie Bonjolo, and guests Kristin Shorten, Laurence Zadvriew, Jackson Barrett and Sandra Di Girolamo as they take you through days 11 and 12 in the search for Cleo Smith.

Follow the full podcast series here.

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