Abbie: Woman appears in court today

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The Independent Online
A 22-YEAR-OLD woman will appear in court in Nottingham this morning charged with the abduction of baby Abbie Humphries. Yesterday the police refused to answer criticism of their handling of the case on the grounds that it is sub judice.

Police have admitted they visited the house where the child was found at least once during the inquiry and an officer failed to recognise her. They eventually raided the house the Wollaton district early on Saturday morning.

A spokesman said: 'We wish to emphasise that we are not seeking to be defensive over this issue. We are not in any way uncomfortable about the circumstances involved. They are, however, central to the evidence . . . to be presented to the court as part of the prosecution case. For this reason we are unable to . . . place the circumstances at this stage in the public domain.'

Abbie spent yesterday with her family at a secret address. Sergeant Mick Roberts, the officer who comforted Abbie's parents, Karen and Roger Humphries, throughout their 15-day ordeal and has become a close family friend, said they were 'ecstatic' to have Abbie home with her brother, Charlie, aged three. Sgt Roberts said: 'When I saw them they were on cloud nine.'

At the Humphries' home in Sherwood, neighbours have hung a pink- ribboned placard reading 'Welcome Home Abbie' in front of their house. The Humphries' local parish church, St John the Evangelist, held a special thanksgiving service yesterday.

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