The 36-year-old man sustained a head injury in custody after his arrest over the disappearance of Cleo Smith, 4, who was rescued by police 18 days after she went missing from a remote campsite
The suspected abductor of Cleo Smith was beaten ‘black and blue’ by another prisoner inside a police holding cell, the inmate’s mum has claimed.
The 36-year-old man sustained a head injury in custody after his arrest over the disappearance of the four-year-old who was rescued by police from a house in Carnarvon, Australia, 18 days after she went missing from a remote campsite.
The suspect had been taken to Carnarvon police station on Wednesday for a few hours where he sustained head injuries after being allegedly set upon by a prisoner.
The prisoner’s mum said her ‘furious’ son beat the suspect ‘black and blue’ after he discovered why he was being held in custody.
She told Mail Online : “As soon as he heard this bloke was arrested over that little Cleo, he blew up, beat him black and blue.
“I tell you what, he got a real hiding…my son had to be taken out in shackles, and he was taken for treatment…he was in a bad way. He is a big bloke but he really copped it”.
A spokesman for Western Australia Police told the media outlet they would not be commenting on the mum’s claims.
The suspect was seen being loaded into an ambulance outside the police station with a large white bandage wrapped around his head.
He was rushed to hospital for treatment.
Cleo first went missing from the Blowholes Shacks site in Carnarvon, north of Perth, on October 16.
She was on the first night of a holiday at the Quobba Blowholes camping ground which is 560 miles north of Perth and is known for its sea caves and lagoons.
Cleo had gone to bed for the night on an air mattress next to her sister’s cot in a tent.
When her mum woke up the next day the young girl was gone and the tent door was left open.
Ms Smith was adamant that her daughter could not have left the tent by herself, instantly leading to fears that she had been abducted.
Officers acting on intelligence pulled over the alleged kidnapper and bundled him out of a car just after midnight.
Cleo was found locked inside a property nearby after police executed a search warrant on Tuesday night.
WESTERN AUSTRALIAN POLICE FORCE/)
WESTERN AUSTRALIAN POLICE FORCE/)
Neighbours have described the suspect as ‘a loner’ who had been behaving ‘weirdly’.
One local said they saw him buying nappies in a nearby supermarket despite not having children.
Another claimed they heard a girl crying at night in recent days, but said she thought nothing of it at the time.
Dogs usually kept on the backyard of his home were also suddenly moved to the front of the home.
Western Australia Police)
Police said the suspect has undergone a psychiatric assessment after being deemed mentally unstable, The West Australian reported.
Officers said the abduction appears to have been opportunistic and they are not looking for anybody else.
Little is known about how police came to get that intelligence, beyond there being an important tip-off on Tuesday night.
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