An inquest today into the death of Mansfield teenager Amber Peat, who went missing in 2015, heard that her mother was ‘not emotional’ when talking to the police.
An inquest at Nottingham Coroners Court today (February 6) heard that when 13-year-old Amber Peat went missing in May 2015 her mother, Kelly Peat, was ‘not emotional’ and referred to it as what she called ‘attention seeking behaviour’.
Amber had gone missing before on previous occasions and they expected her to return later that evening.
Amber left the family home in Mansfield, on May 30th at around 5:30pm in the evening after an argument with her mother, Kelly Peat.
The court heard that Mrs Peat did not ring the police to report her daughter missing until the early hours of the following morning at 00:56am, nearly eight hours after she had gone missing.
PC Nicola Roe, one of the officers who initially attended the address to file a missing persons report, said: “They had an argument after asking Amber to empty a cool-box, she was not happy she had been asked to do that. They heard the door slam and at that point realised Amber had left the address.”
Ms Roe described Amber’s mother as being ‘matter-of-fact’ and ‘not emotional, like upset, more frustrated’.
Mrs Roe said that Mrs Peat described background information of similar circumstances previously when Amber had gone missing, saying Amber would often ‘throw temper tantrums’ and express ‘attention seeking behaviour’.
Mrs Roe said: “I think my gut feeling was that this was something that had happened a number of times previously, the family seemed very well rehearsed when giving information to police.
The inquest heard that the last sighting of Amber was on May 30, 2015, by Adam Dennis. While cleaning his car he was blocking the pathway that Amber was walking down so he moved out of her way and she continued down Westfield lane.
He said: “She smiled as if to say thanks. She was chewing on the top of her left sleeve. I watched her pass us and walk across the junction onto the grassy area.”
“She began hanging around the leafy area, looking into the bushes as if she was going inside them, then she disappeared”.
The following day Mr Lamb saw a newspaper article regarding a missing girl, at which point he rang 999 to report his sighting to the police.
Mr Lamb’s sighting led to the discovery of Amber at 6:30pm on June 2, 2015, after he led Detective Constable Karl Aram to the bushy area.
Detective Constable Karl Aram said as they approached the “very dense hedgerow” there was an “extremely small gap which could not be seen from the grassy area”.
“You can’t see through the hedgerow, it’s an area that looks like young people have forced their way into.”
“I looked in and saw a female facing me. It was immediately clear to me that she was dead.”
Officer’s had previously searched the area on Sunday 31 May, upon receiving Mr Lamb’s reported sighting.
Coroner Laurinda Bower asked Detective Chief Superintendent Robert Griffin why police did not act sooner on the sighting, he said: “It was acted upon on the Sunday [May 31].”
“Unfortunately, the officers didn’t ask Mr Lamb to take them to the exact spot and conduct a more thorough search.”
“Should they have searched more thoroughly she would have been found”.
The police had in excess of 40 calls regarding sightings of Amber.
By Tuesday Mr Lambs sighting was re-looked at as they had begun prioritising the calls and re-investigating sightings.
The inquest continues.