The case of Madeleine McCann, who went missing back in 2007 in Portugal, has been reopened following an urgent request from British Prime Minister David Cameron, according to People. "The Home Office remains committed to supporting the search for Madeleine McCann," says a representative for the prime minister.
Madeleine, then just shy of her fourth birthday, had disappeared in her sleep, in a room along with her twin siblings, while the children’s parents dined with friends a short distance from their vacation apartment in Praia da Luz, Portugal. When the investigation began, several explanations for her disappearance were offered up, including multiple scenarios in which Madeleine’s parents, doctors Gerry and Kate McCann, were the perpetrators. The McCanns have since been cleared of all suspicion.
"Every hour now I still question, 'Why did I think [leaving her alone] was safe?'" Kate told reporters 100 days after her daughter’s disappearance. "You don't expect a predator to break in and take your daughter out of bed."
The case was put on hold back in 2008 pending new evidence after Portuguese police decided that they had exhausted all avenues of investigation. It had been previously reported in August of 2007 that the police had discovered traces of blood but did not reveal whether it was a part of the investigation or if it had been there since the building was built. They had briefly investigated British expatriate Robert Murat, who was seen near the apartment on the night Madeleine was abducted, and dug up his garden, but then claimed they didn’t have enough evidence to place him under arrest. They soon gave the all clear to rent out the apartment instead of keeping it closed off for further investigation.
"There is no police force doing anything active, and there hasn't been for a very long time," Gerry said in 2010. "The onus has fallen on us to run the search for our own daughter, and I don't think it's right." While Kate had left her practice to take care of the couple’s twins and manage Madeline’s Fund, Gerry continued to work as a consulting oncologist. Meanwhile, the money they received from their daughter’s fund (roughly $3 million at the time) were used to hire a private detective to continue the search.
Their twins, they say, remember Madeleine in their own way, borrowing stuffed animals from her room, but making sure to always put them back neatly, saving a piece of their candy for their sister, and drawing her pictures, which are always placed in a safe box for later.
"Every day feels so hard without Madeleine," Kate said just months after her daughter’s disappearance, as she held tight her daughter's favorite toy. "We all miss her so much."
Our hearts go out to the family who continues to struggle each day with the loss of their precious daughter, and we sincerely hope there is a light at the end of this long, dark tunnel.