Sign In  |  Register  |  About Mill Valley  |  Contact Us

Mill Valley, CA
September 01, 2020 1:29pm
7-Day Forecast | Traffic
  • Search Hotels in Mill Valley

  • CHECK-IN:
  • CHECK-OUT:
  • ROOMS:

Missing North Carolina girl’s stepfather convicted of failing to report child’s disappearance

Christopher Palmiter, stepfather of missing North Carolina girl Madalina Cojocari, was found guilty on May 31 of failing to report the disappearance of a child.

A North Carolina jury on May 31 found Christopher Palmiter, stepfather of missing Cornelius girl Madalina Cojocari, guilty of failure to report the disappearance of a child to law enforcement.

The Mecklenburg County jury took 15 minutes after Palmiter's weeklong trial to reach a verdict, according to FOX 8 Greensboro.

"He was the person in the role of supervising her, and he failed. That’s why he’s sitting in this seat," Mecklenburg County prosecutor Austin Butler said in his closing arguments on Friday.

Madalina was last seen getting off a school bus in her hometown of Cornelius, just north of Charlotte, on Nov. 21, 2022, when she was 11 years old. Authorities have been unable to locate her since.

NORTH CAROLINA GIRL MADALINA COJOCARI MISSING FOR ONE YEAR: ‘NOT GOING TO STOP UNTIL WE FIND HER’

Her mother, Diana Cojocari, pleaded guilty last month to the same charge as Palmiter. Diana, a Moldova native, and Pamliter did not report the 11-year-old girl missing to police until weeks later on Dec. 15, 2022, despite telling police the last time they saw their daughter was at home the evening of Nov. 23, 2022.

The Mecklenburg County judge sentenced Palmiter to serve a suspended 30-month supervised probation, FOX 8 reported. Palmiter's lawyer could not immediately be reached for comment.

MADALINA COJOCARI: NORTH CAROLINA POLICE RELEASE NEW PHOTO OF 11-YEAR-OLD MISSING SINCE NOVEMBER

Palmiter's defense attorneys argued that Diana manipulated him and made him believe his stepdaughter was safe at the time of her disappearance. Prosecutors, however, included testimony from an FBI analyst, who presented phone and email evidence that suggested Palmiter knew Madalina was missing yet did not report her disappearance to authorities, according to FOX 8.

"I think Diana took her somewhere with her Moldovan family," Palmiter testified during his trial, FOX 8 reported. "I believe Diana has tucked her away somewhere where she’s not going to be found."

Diana told school officials and Cornelius Police she hadn't seen her daughter, a 6th-grader at Bailey Middle School who was born in Moldova, since she went to her bedroom the night of Nov. 23, 2022, around 10 p.m. after she and Palmiter got into an argument, court documents state.

Palmiter said that on Nov. 24, 2022, he drove to his relatives' home in Michigan "to recover some items" after an argument with his wife. Diana apparently went into her daughter's room around 11:30 that morning to discover the 11-year-old was gone, according to an affidavit.

When Palmiter returned home to Cornelius on Nov. 26, Diana apparently asked him where their daughter was, and Palmiter asked DIana the same question, the affidavit states.

MISSING NORTH CAROLINA GIRL'S MOTHER WANTED TO SMUGGLE 11-YEAR-OLD FROM HOME: WARRANT

Soon after reporting Madalina missing last year, her parents penned a handwritten note expressing their concern for her, which the CPD shared with the public on Dec. 22. 

MISSING MADALINA COJOCARI: TIMELINE OF NORTH CAROLINA GIRL'S DISAPPEARANCE THAT WENT UNREPORTED FOR WEEKS

Search warrants unsealed last year suggest Diana and her mother contacted a distant relative asking if he would help in "smuggling" Diana and Madalina from their Cornelius home before Madalina disappeared, according to phone records obtained by the Cornelius Police Department.

"She told him she was in a bad relationship with co-defendant Christopher Palmiter and wanted a divorce," the warrant states.

Authorities are asking anyone with information about Madalina's whereabouts to contact the CPD at 704-892-7773.

Data & News supplied by www.cloudquote.io
Stock quotes supplied by Barchart
Quotes delayed at least 20 minutes.
By accessing this page, you agree to the following
Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.
 
 
Copyright © 2010-2020 MillValley.com & California Media Partners, LLC. All rights reserved.