Bernadette Walker’s parents charged with her murder seven weeks after reporting 17-year-old missingby Holly Christodoulou
THE parents of a missing 17-year-old girl have been charged with her murder.
Bernadette Walker was reported missing by Sarah Walker, 37, and 50-year-old Scott Walker seven weeks ago in Cambridgeshire.
The pair, who have nine children including a six-month-old baby, today appeared at Peterborough Magistrates' Court charged with murder.
They were remanded in custody ahead of a hearing at Peterborough Crown Court on Wednesday.
Detectives from the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit yesterday declared the teen's disappearance as a “no body” murder investigation.
They were seen carrying out forensic searches at her home in Peterborough, Cambs, but are urgently appealing for information.
Bernadette's parents told police they last saw her on July 18 when she ran out of their car.
They said they received a text nearly two days later at 1am on July 20 to say that she would be returning home “soon” to the family’s five bedroom council home.
But when they heard nothing more, she was reported missing the following day on July 21.
Mum Sarah also urged the public to help distribute posters.
She said: "We have had no contact with her since 1am on July 20, when she texted me to say she would be home soon. None of her friends have heard from her and she's not accessed social media."
She added: "I can't eat or sleep properly. I miss and love my eldest princess so much, she's missing out on her baby sister, who has learned to smile and coo already.
"I have to think that she is hiding at one of her friend's homes, worried about coming home now that the police will want to speak to her, I can't think of any alternative scenarios, I just can't.
"I know my baby girl wouldn't be out in the open. She's scared of being out in the dark alone, that's what makes me think she's at a friend's house.
"I just wish someone would just say she's here and she's safe. I want to cuddle her, but right now I'd accept that she's safe and well."
Dad Scott also appealed for information, saying: "You can imagine how much we are both worried.
"We miss you. We need to know that you're safe. We love you."
Neighbours today told how police arrived at the home on Friday afternoon and seized a Mercedes from outside.
They then saw Bernadette's parents being led out of the house by cops.
TJ Chilvers said: "I’m surprised, they seemed a nice family.
"Police we’re here all yesterday and then even searched Sarah’s car after smashing the back window. It’s exactly the same model and colour as her husband’s but they didn’t take it away."
TJ described artistic Bernadette as "very quiet and pleasant", saying: "I only knew her to say Hi to. She never said much.
"She had a boyfriend who she met at Peterborough Regional College and he used to come around to the house but they split up a month ago."
Detective Superintendent Jon Hutchinson said: "Whilst my team have made significant progress with this investigation in the last few days, we are yet to find Bernadette.
"Therefore my plea is for anyone who has information on what has happened to her, or where she might be, to get in touch as a matter of urgency."