Madeleine McCann: who killed Peggy Knobloch?
“Body of German Maddie is found,” says the Daily Star on its page 7. The so-dubbed “German Maddie” is a “missing girl who looked like Madeleine McCann”. How grim. A dead child called Peggy Knobloch – yep, she had a name of her own – is recast as another person. Worst yet, Peggy vanished from her home in May 2001 – six years before Madeleine McCann went missing. Before Madeleine McCann – the Star’s ‘Our Maddie’ – had been born.
Peggy Knobloch was nine and making her way home from school when she vanished.
The Mail says Peggy Knobloch is “considered ‘the German Madeleine McCann'”. The Sun says she is the “German Maddie”. The Mirror calls her the “German ‘Madeleine McCann'”.
Madeleine McCann was four when she vanished. She was on holiday in Portugal.
As papers browse old missing person’s files for other blonde children they can rebrand as “[insert location here] Maddie”, we read that a man was jailed for life in 2004 for telling police he had sexually abused Peggy and killed her. After 10 years in a secure hospital, the man withdrew his confession and was released.
He wasn’t in Portugal in 2007.
The link between Peggy Knobloch and Madeleine McCann exists only in the pages of the febrile Press, wherein blonde children are always news.
The Mirror, however, produces a tasteless clickbait-style “Five reasons why ‘German Maddie’s’ disappearance 15 years ago is strikingly similar to the McCann case”. Writes Sophie Evans as “REASON 1”:
Peggy had blonde hair – just like Madeleine. The German youngster also had bright blue eyes, while Madeleine has ‘blue and green eyes’.
Will the Mirror see spooky similarities when black or Asian children go missing in Portugal, the UK, Germany or beyond? Or does the Mirror save its biggest scoops for blondes?
And why else is Peggy in the news? The Indy says the “remains of ‘German Madeleine McCann'” were found in woods after a 15-year search. The thinking is that a wild animal dug up her body, which was found by a man out looking for mushrooms. The paper adds”: “At the time it was presumed she had been kidnapped and murdered, although police will now be able to launch a full investigation into the circumstances surrounding her death.”
A body helps a missing person story reach a conclusion.
The search for Madeleine McCann goes on.