Rarely does a story about a runaway child end so well, but this one has a bizarre twist.
Thousands of police and volunteers scoured every street, shopping centre, park and beach around Sydney's eastern suburbs last weekend when 11 year old schoolgirl Michelle Levy ran away from home. And when she hadn't been found after two nights, things looks bad. Then out of the blue, she turned up safe and well and was back in the arms of her family.
Adam and Anne Levy
She said she had an argument with her father over a chocolate bar and decided to run away. She had run away before.
Her name and face were broadcast over every radio and television station in Sydney, yet a man in his 50s befriended the lost girl at a shopping centre in Randwick and took her home to his unit instead of calling police.
Michelle's father Adam said he wanted to thank the man but didn't think it important to ask his daughter what his name was. "If he wants to get in touch, we welcome the opportunity to thank him but beyond that, we are allowing him to go his own way" he said. He didn't want to harass the man who had cared for his daughter. "We haven't asked his name and it doesn't matter, the important thing is that he did look after her."
For some reason, the good Samaritan didn't ring police, he rang Anglicare - a Christian organization. He knew they helped people in the community so he rang the Bondi office who told the parents on Monday morning that her daughter had been found at a unit in Mulwarree Avenue, Randwick.
The stranger wants to keep a low profile and refused to talk publicly about what took place and police say no charges will be laid against him.
So what happened when she got home? Mr Levy said "Michelle tidied up some of the mess the police had left in her room, we had dinner, she played a bit and we spoke a bit about where she went and how she came to be with this person" he said yesterday. "Michelle has gone to school and seems quite happy and pretty much back to normal."
Adam Levy, a business analyst will face Waverley Court on November 20 for allegedly assaulting a male. He said he will fight the charge and it has nothing to do with his daughter.