900 days of hell

By Jo Dougherty

MICK Peet is a man obsessed.

Every day he forces himself to get out of bed and continue his search for the man he believes is responsible for the murder of his beloved daughter.

"My heart feels like it has been hit with an axe," the 45-year-old Innes Park father said.

Mr Peet last spoke to his eldest daughter Lateesha Nolan on New Year's Eve in 2004.

Four days later on the night of January 4, 2005, Miss Nolan left her four children aged 18 months, three, four and five, with their grandmother about 9.30pm, promising to return shortly.

It was the last time anybody would see her.

Police are very keen to speak to Malcolm Naden, one of Australia's most wanted men about Miss Nolan's disappearance.

At 24, young mother Lateesha Nolan was "on top of the world".

She had just bought a new car and was planning a trip from her home in Dubbo, New South Wales, to vist dad Mick Peet in Bundaberg.

"I love you dad," were the last words she said during a telephone call on New Year's Eve, 2004.

On the night of January 4, 2005, Lateesha Nolan left her children aged 18 months, three, four and five, with their grandmother about 9.30pm, promising to return shortly.

"We got a phone call the next morning to say she was missing," Mr Peet said.

"I feel sick every day just thinking about it.

"Finding her is always on my mind, I can't get it out of my mind, but I do try to grin and bear it for the rest of my family."

NSW police are keen to speak to Malcolm Naden, who is also wanted for the 2005 murder of Kristy Scholes, whose body was found under a bed in his Dubbo home six months after Lateesha disappeared.

There is a $50,000 reward for information leading to his capture.

Mr Peet believes that not since Ned Kelly has there been a reward for the capture, rather than conviction, of a suspect.

Detective Superintendent Geoff Beresford of the homicide squad said when the reward was posted it may provide a breakthrough.

"Detectives have been carrying out exhaustive inquiries across the state to locate Mr Naden, but believe he has been assisted in his efforts to evade police," Det Supt Beresford said.

"It is our view that with the offer of this reward, it may cause whoever is helping him to rethink their position and provide us with crucial information."

NSW police media liaison officer Georgie Wells said police had not given up hope of finding Naden.

Mr Peet, who is on a disability pension, now spends every waking minute trawling through Internet websites devoted to missing persons in a desperate bid to find a clue to Lateesha's disappearance and the whereabouts of Naden.

"Every day is a struggle to get out of bed," he said.

"But I have to get up, if not to find Lateesha and her killer, then for my other children.

"My greatest fear is leaving this planet and not knowing what happened to her."



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