Missing schoolgirl may have been seen (+video)

By Jarrod Booker

There may have been a sighting of missing schoolgirl Marie Davis at a hospital, police have said.

Fears have been growing for the Christchurch 15-year-old, who has never run away before, and always keeps in cellphone contact with friends, but no one has been able to reach her.

Inspector Warren Kemp said a young woman captured on security camera footage at Christchurch Hospital last night may be Marie.

Mr Kemp said police will be examining the video today to see if it can be confirmed.

He said a friend of Marie was in a car accident and hospital staff thought the missing girl could have visited her.

Police yesterday described her disappearance as "unusual".

"For a responsible 15-year-old, this is unusual," said Detective Senior Sergeant Virginia Le Bas.

"The police are concerned about her safety. We are of the belief that there is someone who will know something about where Marie is."

Police have used dogs to search the Styx Mill reserve, north of Christchurch, which Marie often visits.

Marie's cousin and family spokesman Nick Donald said Marie was wonderful with his children and had a "neat personality".

She excelled in art and photography and was doing well at school. Although sometimes shy, she had a close circle of friends.

"A 15-year-old can't survive out there for five days with no money, on her own, without somebody knowing, somebody helping her. We want her back home, and back with the family."

Marie's principal, Denis Pyatt, described her as a "bright spark" and "universally thought of as a lovely young woman".

Police would not comment on whether her cellphone had been used. She had no bank account.

Her carry-bag, phone and a camera were missing from her Papanui home.

- With NEWSTALK ZB

- NZ Herald

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