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Jesinta Franklin Questions Whether Cleo Smith Would Have Been Found If She Was Indigenous

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Jesinta Franklin Questions Whether Cleo Smith Would Have Been Found If She Was Indigenous

An Australian model and AFL wife has questioned whether Cleo Smith would have been found by police in Western Australia if she wasn't white.

Jesinta Franklin was one of many Australians who were thrilled to see the four-year-old girl reunited with her family after being missing for nearly three weeks.

Police believe Cleo was abducted while her family was staying at a campsite and they discovered her 19 days later locked inside a man's home 70 kilometres away in Carnarvon.

It was a massive win for police and detectives who had been working around the clock through hundreds of leads and tip offs from the public.

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However, Ms Franklin also pointed out how there are loads of missing Indigenous people in Australia that don't get the same amount of public awareness.

Credit: Jesinta Franklin/Instagram
Credit: Jesinta Franklin/Instagram

In an Instagram Story, the model said: "Without taking away from the joy of finding a missing child alive and well, I can't help but think about the disparity that exists in this country between missing children who are White and Indigenous children when it comes to the visibility and coverage of the case.

"I have read so many heartbreaking stories of missing Indigenous children that garner hardly any media coverage or the social media coverage that a case like Cleo's did.

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"I have read so many heartbreaking stories of missing Indigenous children that garner hardly any media coverage or the social media coverage that a case like Cleo's did."

The same thing happened when Gabby Petito was missing in the US and a huge manhunt was launched for her and for her fugitive fiancé.

Many people asked why there wasn't a similar amount of media coverage for missing or murdered non-Caucasian women.

In Western Australia, which is the same state where Cleo Smith went missing, the ABC revealed back in 2019 that Aboriginal people make up 17.5 per cent of unsolved missing persons cases.

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That's despite Aboriginal people making up just 3 per cent of the state's population.

Queensland and New South Wales also told the national broadcaster that they had 'an over-representation of Indigenous missing persons'.

Cleo Smith was found yesterday (November 3) morning just before 1am after police followed information to a 36-year-old man's home.

They discovered her locked inside one of the rooms and when they asked her name, she replied 'Cleo Smith'.

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Police have since arrested the man and he's being interviewed by officers.

Featured Image Credit: Ellie Smith/Instagram

Topics: Australia

Stewart Perrie
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