Accused Cleo Smith kidnapper, Terence Kelly in maximum security prison

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Accused Cleo Smith kidnapper, Terence Kelly in maximum security prison

The 36-year-old doll aficionado accused of abducting 4-year-old Cleo Smith in Australia appeared to wink creepily at reporters Friday while being transferred to a maximum-security prison.

Terence Kelly was photographed making the gesture while being escorted from a police car to a small plane in the town of Carnarvon, where the little girl was found alive and well Wednesday after going missing for 18 days.

In their first public statement since Cleo was found, her parents, Ellie Smith and Jake Gliddon, on Friday said they were “humbled by the love and support” they have received throughout their ordeal.

 “We are so thankful that our little girl is back within our arms and our family is whole again,” they said. “In particular we would like to thank the WA Police, all those involved in the initial search, the Carnarvon community, local businesses and of course our family and friends.”

Since his arrest Wednesday, it has emerged that Kelly — whom his neighbors described as a “loner” — had an obsession with Bratz dolls and owned a large collection of them. One of his social media profiles is a Facebook page devoted entirely to the toys.

Cleo Smith and her mother Ellie Smith
Cleo Smith and her mother, Ellie Smith, leave a house where the girl spent her first night after being rescued in Carnarvon, Australia.
AAP/Richard Wainwright via REUTERS

The suspect also posted an image of himself wearing a Bratz doll shirt as he took one of his dolls for a car ride.

“I love taking my dolls for drive arounds and doing their hair and taking selfies in public,” he wrote.

Kelly later landed at Jandakot Airport and made his way to Casuarina Prison, one of Perth’s most notorious lockups, Perth Now reported. He is expected to appear again in court on Dec. 6.

Terrence Kelly
Terrence Kelly was obsessed with Bratz dolls and had a room full of the toys in his house.
Facebook
Terrence Darrell Kelly's doll collection.
Terrence Darrell Kelly’s doll collection.
Facebook

On Friday morning, two child specialists arrived at Cleo’s home along with two detectives to work on compiling the girl’s victim statement, according to Perth Now.

The two detectives, Kurt Ford and Drew Masterson, were among the team that rescued Cleo two days earlier by busting through the alleged abductor’s front door, the news outlet reported.

Cleo went missing from her family’s tent on Oct. 16 at the remote Blowholes Shacks campsite in Macleod. Police launched an extensive search by land and air, set up roadblocks and scoured surveillance footage.

The officers found her after breaking into the locked house in Carnarvon, a town about 62 miles south of the campsite on the far northwest coast of the state.

Terrence Kelly being arrested.
Terence Darrell Kelly has been charged with various offenses relating to the disappearance of 4-year-old Cleo Smith.
Tamati Smith/Getty Images)

Meanwhile, the Daily Mail reported that Kelly posted a cryptic message about needing privacy and adults being “careful online too” the day he allegedly abducted Cleo — and that his Facebook profile also followed the girl’s mother.

“I can’t accept friend requests from strangers … I live a private life and I respect those who are on my friend list to ensure their privacy is respected too,” his Facebook status said, the outlet reported.

“Us adults have to be careful online too,” he added.

Cleo Smith
Cleo Smith was missing for 18 days after being abducted from a campsite.
Tamati Smith/Getty Images

His profile on the social media site also had been following Cleo’s mom, Ellie, who regularly shared updates about the investigation and begged for her daughter’s safe return, the news outlet said.

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