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Anorak | Tia Sharp: The bus, the tram, the cynical Sun and Stuart Hazell’s regret

Tia Sharp: The bus, the tram, the cynical Sun and Stuart Hazell’s regret

by | 7th, August 2012

TIA Sharp has been missing for four days. Having introduced by speculation and inference the grim spectres of murder and abduction, the media moves on. The last known sighting was of Tia leaving her grandmother Christine Sharp’s home in The Lindens, New Addington, last Friday.

As ever, the Sun has sought to own the missing woman, offering a £25,000 reward for information. The Sun might be sister organ to the News of the World that hacked missing girls’ mobile phones, but its cares enough to use money to get itself involved in the story. Is it caring or just deeply cynical?

A shopkeeper in Mitcham is offering £500 reward for anyone who knows where Tia Sharp is. Javid Iqval, owner of UK Household Goods, a second hand furniture shop, on Mitcham Road, said he wanted to help find Tia. Mr Iqval, 60, who has two daughters said: “I am a family man and everyone has got a daughter. She is only 12 years old and I just want to help them. I know £500 isn’t a lot of money but that is what I can afford and I will offer that.”

The Daily Mail writes:

It was believed that Tia was seen last by her grandmother Christine Sharp’s boyfriend Stuart Hazell at around midday on Friday when she said goodbye and promised to be home by 6pm. But there was confusion about Tia’s departure when her stepfather Mr Niles claimed that she had gone to meet someone, but it was unclear who as Mr Hazell had not heard her say the name of the person.

Although Mr Hazell was in the house when she left, her distraught family revealed yesterday that he was doing housework and was unable to hear over the sound of the vacuum cleaner when she called out to say who she was meeting.

The Mail then introduces other family members. It’s like Leveson never happened:

Mrs Sharp claimed Tia had recently clashed with her biological father, Steven Carter, after he tried to contact her on Facebook. Mr Carter’s brother Aaron, 27, denied claims of harassment last night.

The Daily Telegraph reports:

Mrs Sharp, 46, a care worker, left Tia with her boyfriend Stuart Hazell, 37, when she went to work on Friday morning. Relations said Tia told Mr Hazell she was catching the bus into Croydon and left the house alone at about midday. She has not been seen since. However, Mr Hazell told his sister, Sarah Parratt, and his father, Keith Hazell, that he had walked with her to the tram station but was unsure whether she boarded a tram. “He’s beside himself,” Mrs Parratt said. “He was the last person to see her and he just doesn’t know what has happened. He said he almost went into town with her but it would have been too busy. He gave her £11 to buy some flip-flops and left her to it. He thinks the world of her and treats her like his own daughter. Tia spends every weekend with Stuart and her gran.”

Keith Hazell said: “I spoke to Stuart this morning. He said he had walked her to the tram but then what happened?”

DCI Nick Scola leading the inquiry said:

“We know Tia was at her grandmother’s house and slept late on the morning of 3 August. She then left to get the bus. She told her grandmother’s partner she was going out – he was the last person to see her that we are aware of at this time.”

Image left: David Sharp (front) with two firnds (names not given) wearing TShirts during an appeal for information at New Scotland Yard in central London.

The Sun goes for the personal, eyeing that exclusive interview with an insight:

THE gran of missing 12-year-old Tia Sharp pleaded to her yesterday: “Come home, your dinner’s still in the oven.” Neighbours in special T-shirts joined police searching for a fourth day, as gran Christine Sharp said she still had her favourite pizza and chips…

The gran, 46, said: “She promised her grandad she’d be home by six. I’ve still got her dinner in the oven. It’s pizza. I can’t bear to take it out.”

The Croydon Advertiser reports.

Tia’s uncle, David Sharp, appealed for information during a press conference held at Scotland Yard on Monday night, the second public appeal since Tia’s disappearance. Wearing a T-Shirt with his niece’s face on, Mr Sharp, 28, said: “Tia please come home. You are not in trouble – please call us or call the police.”

And:

But the Advertiser last night (Monday) also spoke to Tia’s tearful mother, Natalie, 31, who also said a witness saw the 12-year-old leave on her own on Friday. She said: “I have an independent witness that she left on her own walking down the road…”

Speaking of the family’s heartbreak, who come from Mitcham, she added: “We all feel terrible we think she’s been taken but we just don’t know. There is no CCTV. We know absolutely nothing. I wish to god I could tell you something. My baby girl walked out and she vanished.”

DCI Scola said that they had received some reported sightings:

“We have had a good response to our appeals. We have had some 55 reported sightings of Tia, although none of these have been substantiated. Searches are continuing at Tia’s grandmother’s address, CCTV is being collated and viewing continues.”

The BBC adds:

David Niles, 29, said Tia’s mother Natalie was distraught and he had not slept for four days…Wearing a T-shirt bearing Tia’s image, Mr Niles said: “I just want to find my little girl. “We’re in bits, the whole country has helped us and is supporting us. I haven’t slept in four days. Natalie (Tia’s mother) is in bits.”

He said he last saw Tia on Thursday morning at the family home in Mitcham before he headed to work. “She was good as gold,” Mr Niles said. “I know I am not her real dad, but I have been there since day dot. When she left the house she shouted ‘Bye’ and ‘See you by six’.”

In other news, the Croydon Guardian writes:

Tia’s uncle David Sharp had this to say on Facebook: “Can everyone please stop posting negative and nasty comments you are all entitled to have your own opinions we know! But please for Tia’s sake please, please, please do not air them on her page which is only to help find Tia.

“Once again thank you to all those kind hearted people that are out there searching day and night posting fliers and putting them in every place they can to find her!”

A big search is on. Let’s hope she turns up safe and well.

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Posted: 7th, August 2012 | In: Reviews Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink