Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Victoria Stafford, eight years old, was sighted leaving her Woodstock, Ontario school on Wednesday afternoon with an unknown woman caught on video camera. She has not been seen since.
Victoria (Tori) attended grade 3 at Oliver Stephens Public School, and the video is from the College Avenue secondary school as Victoria and the unidentified woman walked along Fyfe Avenue.
“I’ve had a lot of problems come up in my life and stuff like that, and I haven’t always been there for my kids, but this is my baby girl and it’s absolutely hurting now,” her father Robert Stafford said, “It’s killing me, [I want to] let her know that I love her and I’ll see her soon. One way or another I’ll see her soon.”
150 volunteers joined search efforts and to pass out flyers on the 10th. Police say they have no need of more volunteers at this time, however they would appreciate any tips or calls from anyone who may have seen either Victoria or the woman.
The unidentified woman seen in the video is described as between 19 and 25 years old with straight long black hair. She weighs about 120 to 125 pounds and was wearing a white coat and black jeans in the video. Victoria was wearing a green shirt with a black pleated skirt. She was wearing black and white shoes and carried a purple and pink Bratz purse. She had on a black Hannah Montana jacket which had a white fur lined hood.
“I think what’s happening with members of the public is an expression of their emotions, their concern for this child. And I think that’s good in terms of the willingness of this community to step up,” said Michael Harding, Mayor of Woodstock.
Volunteers are making and handing out purple ribbons, Tori’s favourite colour. A candlelight vigil will be held in the evening on Easter Sunday.