Raising a child is not an easy job since it requires our attention 24/7. Once they start walking, the job gets more difficult since you can’t take your eyes off of them. In the United States, around 58,200 abductions occur every year. One of the most horrendous experiences in life would be that of a parent whose child went missing. The story of little Pauline was filled with errors from the beginning. Two year old Pauline went missing in April of 1922 and was later discovered and returned back to her mother. Upon her return, things only started to get complicated for the family. Here’s the story of a French girl named Pauline Picard and the mystery behind her disappearance.
Part I – The disappearance.
Little Pauline was only two years old when she went missing from her family home in Goas Al Ludu, France. In April of 1922, Pauline was playing in her family’s farm before disappearing into thin air. Her concerned parents immediately contacted authorities who organized search parties with the help of volunteers. Though many came forward to help find little Pauline, the search yielded no positive results. The locals as well as police believed that Pauline was kidnapped by gypsies and ferried off without a trace. The family was in the dark for weeks after her disappearance since no clues were found.
A few weeks into the incident, the family received a tip that a little girl matching Pauline’s description was seen wandering around in Cherbourg. The location was 300 miles away from where Pauline was last seen. The police took the little girl into custody and photographed her. The picture was then used in a photo lineup in which Pauline’s mother was asked to identify her. Pauline’s mother recognized the girl and the police officer who found the girl was also satisfied with the resemblance.
The fact that a toddler was able to somehow find her way 300 miles away from home was brushed aside.
When Pauline’s mother and the finding officer were satisfied with the resemblance of the found child, they brushed aside the facts. Neither parties thought of how the child managed to get 300 miles away from home by herself. Soon after identifying the girl on the photograph as their missing daughter, the desperate parents traveled to retrieve her. The reunion which was supposed to be blissful, had its fair share of odd moments. When the parents arrived at the police station, the girl appeared to not recognize them and kept her distance. She even failed to communicate with them in their native Breton dialect. The oddities did not seem to cause any suspicion since both the police and the parents thought that she was traumatized by the whole ordeal. Without wasting any time, the Picards took their daughter home.
Part II – The discovery of a body turns the Picards world upside down once again.
After returning to their home in Goas Al Ludu, the Picards were trying to get back to their normal lives. The miraculous return of the girl grabbed the attention of many newspaper agencies across France as well as The New York Times. A few weeks later, the Picards began to suspect that it was not their child.
As the Picards were wondering about their daughter, a local farmer who went by the name of Yves Martin, approached them. The man without any hesitation asked the Picards if they were sure that the girl was their daughter. He then exclaimed, “God help me, I am guilty” before running away. Authorities considered the man to be unstable and admitted him to an asylum. Then came another discovery that made the lives of the Picards even more complicated.
Continue reading Part III on the next page.