The disappearance of Madeleine McCann is an international controversy due to the details that surround her case. In fact, those very circumstances are being used to serve warnings to parents who behave less than responsibly. The Brisbane Times reports that a judge in Queensland has recently referenced Maddie’s disappearance to scold a mother who put her child at risk with her behavior.
The mother and child aren’t being named, but the 25-year-old woman was arrested after she reportedly neglected the girl by leaving her alone while she went on a drunken “revenge spree.” The woman reportedly abandoned the toddler alone at home overnight while she went out drinking and exacting revenge on a lover who had just ended their relationship. She pleaded guilty to her actions, which involved throwing bricks through windows and slashing tires as well as abandoning her child with no supervision. The Magistrate who presided over the case warned the woman about Madeleine McCann’s disappearance.
“Children can be abducted. The parents of Madeleine McCann left her asleep in a locked apartment. She has never been found.”
The judge was referring to the circumstances surrounding the disappearance of little Maddie. The British child was only three years old when her parents left her and her infant siblings completely unsupervised while they enjoyed wine and food at a tapas bar that was more than 100 yards from their rental apartment.
After their night of dining, Kate McCann checked on her children, finding that Madeleine was nowhere in the apartment. Over the course of a decade, numerous pieces of evidence have come out in this case, most of which implicating the parents in some fashion. At one point they were declared suspects in the disappearance and presumed death of their daughter, but they’ve never been charged or prosecuted.
Even though Kate and Gerry McCann have never been convicted of any crimes, their story has been used more than once to serve as a warning to less-than-responsible parents. Back in 2014 a British attorney argued that his client shouldn’t be prosecuted for child neglect after she drove drunk with her children, because Kate and Gerry McCann weren’t ever prosecuted for leaving their children alone while they went out drinking with friends. The Whig reports that the woman ended up entering a guilty plea for child negligence.
Meanwhile, parents of other missing children have also exclaimed displeasure with the way the Madeleine McCann case has headed and that it has dominated headlines and police attention while their loved ones remain missing. The mother of long-missing child Ben Needham is among those parents. The Mirror reports that Kerry Needham has expressed concern that her son’s case hasn’t gotten as much attention as Madeleine McCann’s. The mother has even avoided being overly critical of the McCanns while requesting more attention.
“I’m not being critical of the McCann family at all. What I’m being critical of is the fact that Ben has been missing 22 years now, and we’ve never had this support from the British Government.”
Do you think Maddie’s case serves as a warning to negligent parents, or is it wrong to compare cases of child neglect to the actions of the missing child’s parents?
Photo: Madeleine McCann via Wikipedia