Policeman admits murdering Dutch 12-year-old
Published on 17 March 2010 - 7:38am
A policeman in the southern Dutch city of Dordrecht has confessed to murdering Milly Boele, a 12-year-old girl who went missing last week. The girl's body was found late last night buried in the man's garden, just metres from her own home.
At a press conference, a public prosecutor’s office spokesman said the 26-year-old police officer has admitted taking Milly to his house, killing her and burying the body. The police do not know what his motive was for killing the girl. The spokesman could not say whether she had been sexually assaulted. The results of a post mortem will be known by Friday at the earliest.
On Tuesday, the officer went to a police station and confessed to the murder. His garden was searched and the body found late on Tuesday night. The man is reported to have recently bought the house where he was living with his girlfriend. It is just across the road from the Boele family home.
The prosecution spokesman said the police had interviewed the officer during general investigations of men living near Milly. His story was “not easily corroborated” and he was questioned again. With the net closing, he apparently confessed to his girlfriend, who convinced him to turn himself in.
Reacting on Dutch television to the news of the discovery of Milly's body, neighbours expressed shock that, after a week of nationwide searches, the young girl had been found so close to her home.
Students at the murdered girl’s school are said to be deeply shocked by what has happened. A school spokeswoman says many of them will need support.
An 'Amber Alert' was issued when Milly Boele disappeared from her home in Dordrecht, near Rotterdam, on Wednesday last week. Posters appeared around the country, there were TV appeals for information, and billboards alongside motorways also displayed images of the missing child. Posters were also displayed at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport as fears rose that the girl had been abducted and possibly taken abroad.
More than 250 tips came in to police after the Amber Alert was launched, but there was criticism too. Amber Alert director, Frank Hoen, says the police should have raised this nationwide alarm much earlier than they did. It was not given until 17 hours after Milly disappeared. Experts say an Amber Alert is much more effective if issued in the first few hours following a disappearance.
There are question marks about the future funding of the Amber Alert system in the Netherlands, but caretaker Justice Minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin told parliament this week that he wants funding to continue.