Madalina Cojocari

Madalina Cojocari: Police Find Kitchen Area Blocked off With Plywood at Missing Girl’s Home, Mom Worried Husband Would ‘Put Family in Danger’

Police removed a “bin of evidence” from a North Carolina home concerning the disappearance of an 11-year-old North Carolina girl, Madalina Cojocari, NBC Charlotte reports.

As CrimeOnline previously reported, Madalina was reported missing on December 15, although her mother, Diana Colocari, 35, says she hasn’t seen her since November 23. The FBI and several other agencies, including the State Bureau of Investigation, have joined the search efforts and investigation.

According to WSOC-TV 9, police arrived at the family’s Cornelius home earlier this week to search for clues in Madalina’s disappearance when they noticed a section of the kitchen sealed off with plywood. Madalina’s stepfather, Christopher Palmiter, 60, told investigators they planned to make a separate apartment in the area.

Police found enough probable cause to arrest the mother and stepfather. Both have been charged with failure to report her disappearance.

According to an arrest affidavit, Cojocari told detectives that she didn’t report Madalina missing because she was concerned that her husband would put her family in danger and that it “might start a conflict” with him.

She reportedly claimed she contacted her family after the child disappeared, and although they encouraged her to contact the police, she decided against it.

Diana Cojocari and Christopher Palmiter/Police Handout

Cojocari also told investigators that some of Madalina’s clothes were missing but that she couldn’t think of anywhere her daughter may have gone. Most of their family, according to Cojocari, live in Moldova, a country in Eastern Europe.

On Wednesday, police released footage taken inside a school bus that shows Madalina in a white shirt and backpack as she exits the bus at 4:59 p.m. on November 21 in Cornelius.

“This is the last time investigators have independent confirmation of when Madalina was last seen. She got off the bus on 11-21-22, at 4:59 p.m. We are seeking additional witnesses outside of the family to narrow down the exact timeline of when she disappeared,” the FBI Charlotte said.

Madalina was reported missing after school officials from Bailey Middle School arrived at the home for a truancy check on December 12, but no one answered. On December 15, Cojacari met with the school, and a missing persons report was subsequently filed with the resource officer.

Madalina is described as being 4-feet-10-inches tall and weighing around 90 pounds. She has brown hair and brown eyes.

Anyone with information on Madalina should call the Cornelius Police Department at 704-892-7773. To remain anonymous, call North Mecklenburg Crime Stoppers at 704-896-7867.

Check back for updates.

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[Featured image: Police Handout]