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Friday, 13 September, 2002, 16:49 GMT 17:49 UK
Huge response to new Milly pictures
Police think this could be the last sighting of Milly
Police think this could be the last sighting of Milly
Police have received 100 calls from the public in response to enhanced pictures of missing schoolgirl Amanda Dowler, which may show her talking to a motorist minutes before she vanished.

Detectives in Surrey say they are "delighted" with the results of their latest appeal but added that it has not led to a major breakthrough.

Computer enhancement of CCTV footage has revealed the image of a lone figure which detectives say has a 50% chance of being the missing teenager.

Police have urged the driver of a dark-coloured saloon car seen talking to the figure to come forward.


The mystery is if it is her where was she in those seven minutes?

Detective chief superintendent Craig Denholm

Detectives in Surrey asked FBI experts in the United States to clean up the images which had been obscured by sun glare.

Talking about the calls from the public, a police spokesman said: "We are very happy with the response and it will take time to work through the calls.

"But we are encouraging people to keep calling if they have any information after seeing the CCTV."

Amanda, also known as Milly, has not been seen since 21 March when the 13-year-old vanished on her way home from Walton-on-Thames railway station.

Last sighting

The footage was taken near the station at 1615 that day, seven minutes after the last sighting of Milly close-by.

Police have so far been unable to identify the car but believe it may be a Honda Prelude or Vauxhall Vectra with a spoiler on the back.

The car was seen driving along Station Avenue towards the station before it pulled over forcing a white Mercedes, believed to be a 190 or 300 series, to manoeuvre round it.

Amanda Dowler
Milly was 13-years-old when she disappeared

Police estimate that about 10 cars may have driven past while the person on the pavement was talking to the driver.

Detective Chief Superintendent Craig Denholm, of Surrey Police, said: "This could be a massively significant development.

"If the pedestrian is Milly then it throws up many more questions such as why did Milly retrace her steps and did she know the person in the car.

'No witness, no body'

"This is an extremely difficult inquiry, with no scene, no witnesses and no body.

"We have done extensive work, ground-breaking work a lot of it, in this investigation.

The dark saloon is shown travelling down Station Avenue
A white Mercedes was behind the dark saloon

"We are still totally committed to finding out what has taken place with Milly but we still believe the most likely scenario is that Milly is the victim of a chance abductor."

"It is not inconsistent with Milly.

"The mystery is if it is her where was she in those seven minutes?," said Mr Denholm.

He is confident the model of the car will be identified.

Driver appeal

The CCTV footage, taken by a camera on the Bird's Eye building near the train station, had previously been investigated by five British laboratories before being sent to the FBI.

Police know Milly vanished within 50 yards of the station because unobscured footage shows the road she would have taken home.

From this, they have identified a "time window" as narrow as 60 seconds, during which she disappeared.

Police have also appealed for anyone who was driving in or out of Walton station car park between 1605 and 1620 BST on 21 March to come forward.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Clarence Mitchell reports from Surrey
"The police are still desperate to hear from anyone who can help"

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