Police name toddler found dead in Oxfordshire house as international search for her mother gets underway

The body of the child was found at a house in Bicester after police received a report from a family member who was worried about her welfare

A toddler found dead at a house yesterday has been identified as 20-month-old Sarah Dahane, police said today.

An international search is underway for her mother who police believe has left the UK and travelled to Kenya.

The body of the child was found at a house in Bicester after police received a report from a family member who was worried about her welfare.

Thames Valley Police said they want to speak to the mother of the child and that she is thought to have left the UK.

Police have now formally identified the child and are treating her death as 'unexplained'.

Further tests will be carried out in the coming days.

Senior investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Ian Hunter said: "Whilst the circumstances of Sarah's death remain unexplained, we are carrying out a detailed and thorough investigation to establish exactly how and why she died.

"We are supporting Sarah's father, who is separated from her mother, with dedicated family liaison officers.

"From information available to us at this time, it would appear Sarah's mother has left the UK at some stage during Wednesday evening. She is believed to have travelled to Kenya. Her exact whereabouts are unknown and we are working with other authorities to establish her exact location.

"While we are working with those individuals and authorities that were in contact with both Sarah and her mother prior to her death, we urgently wish to speak to Sarah's mother to better understand exactly what has happened. We strongly urge her to present herself to the authorities."

Officers were called to the address in Herald Way, Glory Farm, at around 10am yesterday after a member of Sarah's family contacted police with concerns.

Superintendent Colin Paine, Local Policing Area Commander for Cherwell and West Oxfordshire, said: "Incidents such as these are very sad, but isolated and rare.

"We continue to have neighbourhood patrols in the area addressing any community concerns."