This information belongs to the Ministério Público in Portimão, Portugal.
It was released to the public on 4 August 2008 in accordance with Portuguese Law


20 to 21 Witness statement of Sharon Lewin (Laurels Nursery School Worker) 2008.04.21


Cartas Rogatorias Vol V Pages 20 to 21

Cartas Rogatorias Vol V
Pages 20 to 21
Leicestershire Police Force
Statement by Sharon LEWIN
Occupation: Teaching Assistant
This statement (2 pages) is truthful in accordance with my understanding.
Date: 21st April 2008
I am the person referred to above and I work as a teaching assistant at Laurels Nursery School, Melton Road, Queniborough, Leicestershire. The nursery school has the capacity to receive about 80 children full-time, aged between 6 weeks and 5 years and is open from 07.30 to 18.00 daily. The children are grouped according to age and I work in the section that looks after children aged between two and half and three years old. I have worked at the nursery for five years and I am currently on maternity leave.
I got to know Madeleine and her parents Kate and Gerry through my work at the nursery school. Madeleine started at the nursery when she was about two years old.
When she was two and a half she joined the group supervised by me, I think it was in 2006, and she remained there for about 6 months. Madeleine attended on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
She would be dropped off between 08.00 and 08.30 and would return home at about 17.00. The dropping off and picking up was taken in turns by the parents and as a result of this Kate and Gerry asked me to take care of the children during the evening on some occasions. Kate would pick Madeleine up from the nursery at the end of the day and I would accompany them to their house. We would have tea and I would help give Madeleine her bath.
Kate and Gerry would go out and I would watch a DVD with the girl before telling her a bedtime story.
I think I did this about 5 times and on each occasion it was at their home in Rothley.
I always think of Madeleine as an alert and affectionate girl who liked to live. She was very advanced for her age and independent. She liked to dance and to dress up.
Kate and Gerry were always very friendly to me. I am quite close to both of them and they were always kind and generous. I am probably a bit closer to Kate who would sometimes send me text messages and I would take my baby along to visit her and have coffee.
I consider her to be a good friend.
I never saw Madeleine have any problem or conflict with her parents, family members or friends.
I would describe them as a charming family who loved each other. The twins adored their older sister and Kate and Gerry would often play with the children.
Madeleine felt comfortable at the nursery school, she had many friends and got on well with the other children.
Madeleine was quite a healthy girl. She had a good appetite and ate well. I don't remember any injury or accident. She would occasionally have a small scrape at the nursery but nothing abnormal. During the six months she was under my care she was absent five times because of being unwell, but they were just small colds with a high temperature.
At the nursery medication could only be administered by the senior members of staff and with the agreement of the children's parents. The only medication that I recall Madeleine taking was Calpol to lower her temperature.
Madeleine never complained about her family or friends and as I have already stated I consider them to be a charming family. She loved her mother and father and always knew who would pick her up from the nursery ad was always anxious for that moment. Gerry and Kate never appeared to have any problems in dealing with Madeleine. We would have regular meetings with the parents at the nursery and they never expressed any worry in relation to Madeleine's behaviour.
Madeleine was a very active child but I would not call her hyperactive. She never got over excited and always had good behaviour. Madeleine was easy to look after, a very independent girl but she never placed herself in dangerous situations, as far as I saw.
Occasionally during the afternoon, some of the children would have a siesta in the dormitory but Madeleine never did. I had the opportunity to be present at her bedtime when I looked after her. Bath time was at about 18.30 - 19.00 and she would later go to bed at about 19.30 – 20.00 I would read her a story or two and she would always fall asleep half way through.
Gerry and Kate would normally return home at about 22.30 and before this I would check whether she was all right, by looking around the bedroom door. I do not have knowledge of the girl waking up after she fell asleep.
This statement was made by me and is truthful in accordance with my understanding.


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