Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

A Cry In The Night Part 1 Of 3


"A Dingo Took My Baby!"

They were the words that Lindy Chamberlain had screamed out into the blackness of the cold night in a camping ground close to Ayers Rock, Central Australia, on the night of August 17, when she discovered that her nearly ten-week-old baby, Azaria had been taken by a dingo.

Campgrounds with Chamberlain car and tent
Campgrounds with Chamberlain car
and tent

Lindy had returned to the family tent where she had left her sleeping 4-year-old son, Reagan, and Azaria only moments before. Her husband Michael was sure that he had heard Azaria cry out. Sally Lowe, a fellow camper who had been at the barbecue with husband Greg and their 18-month-old daughter, also heard the cry.

As she approached, closely followed by their 6-year-old son Aidan, Lindy saw with horror a large dingo coming out of their tent. It seemed to be shaking its head like it was trying to drag something out of the tent. She couldn't see what it was. She knew she hadn't left any food in the tent, but there were shoes just inside the door. She called to it to shoo, go away, and increased her speed toward it. The dingo fled around to the back of the tent. As Lindy reached the opening of the tent a sense of panic had begun to well inside her. The children!

The light from the nearby barbecue area from which she had just come cast enough light into the tent, as she crawled inside, for her to see Reagan lying unmoving on his bed. She reached out to touch him and knew the relief that only a parent can understand when she felt him breathing easily. Soundly and safely asleep.

Just beyond Reagan, was baby Azaria's bassinette. It was tipped over slightly, the bedding askew. Lindy frantically reached into the baby's bed to find it empty. She tore at the covers, hoping to find that little Azaria had slipped down beneath the blankets. She did that sometimes, wriggled her way down under the covers till she was completely hidden. She wasn't there.

Lindy began tearing at the blankets — she's so little she would be easy to miss amongst all these blankets. The floor, maybe she's on the floor? The dingo must have knocked her out of the bassinette. That's why she cried out. Lindy desperately searched in amongst the blankets that had fallen to the ground, she might be hurt. God where is she? She's not here!

Lindy ran from the tent moments later, although it seemed like an eternity, to see a dingo running off to the right, around the front of the car, and away into the scrub. Calling out "A dingo has my baby," she ran into the blackness in what she thought was the direction in which her precious baby had been whisked away.

Michael ran to her side and attempted to follow in the direction Lindy had indicated. He was soon thwarted by the blackness of the night. In despair they called to their fellow campers for torches so they could find their baby.

They both knew that with every second that passed the chances of finding their baby girl alive diminished. She was so little and it was so cold. She could be lying somewhere bleeding and how could they possibly find her? It was so dark and there was no way of telling where she was. Why didn't she make any noise, if only they could hear her?



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