Murdered girl 'was warned of bad men'

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The Independent Online
CAROLINE HOGG, the five- year-old girl kidnapped while playing near her home in Edinburgh 11 years ago, had been repeatedly warned about 'bad men' and had been allowed out to play for only five minutes on the day she was abducted. She was found dead in a lay-by in the Midlands.

Yesterday, a statement about Caroline's last day alive was read out at the trial of Robert Black, 46, in Newcastle.

Mr Black denies 10 charges relating to the kidnapping and killing of Caroline, as well as of Susan Maxwell and Sarah Harper. All three girls died in the 1980s.

The statement by Caroline's mother Annette Hogg described what happened on the day Caroline disappeared. Mrs Hogg said she had collected her daughter from a friend's party at about 4pm and had allowed her to play outside when she came home. At about teatime, she went outside and shouted for her, but her daughter did not return. About an hour later, Caroline did return, saying she had been playing at a friend's house. Mrs Hogg said: 'I had rowed with her about that. She then said that she wanted to go out for a walk but I would not let her go.'

Later, her father told her she could play outside, but only for five minutes. A while later, Mrs Hogg went to fetch her daughter in again but could not find her. She had searched the local school grounds but there was no sign of her. Eventually the police were called.

The jury also heard written evidence yesterday from young friends who had last seen Caroline alive. One of them, Nicola Doherty, said she had seen her walk away from her parents' home on the day she vanished. She had also seen a 'weird man' who had walked off in the same direction as Caroline.

The trial continues today.