A ‘bright’ Kettering Science Academy student disappeared with no money, no spare clothes and no working mobile phone, detectives have revealed.
Missing Veronica Sbircea was said to have settled well into the Deeble Road school after her family moved to the town a year ago for a fresh start.
The youngster had made good friends at KSA and is described as bright and good at maths and English by Detective Inspector Stuart Hitchon who is part of a team of 16 officers searching for Veronica.
Her parents Anton and Elena moved to Kettering from their former home in Enfield, London, along with Veronica and her two elder brothers in 2015.
Veronica was due to start year 11 at KSA on September 5.
But on July 21, she suddenly left without telling her parents where she was going. They hadn’t had an argument.
She was in sporadic contact for about a week, and police believe she spent that time in Northampton.
But then Veronica - who sometimes calls herself Rachel or Anna - caught a train to London and was last seen around the KFC in Brixton on July 28.
The bubbly youngster is a prolific social media user on Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter and Kik and had been known to ask strangers in the street if she could use their phones to check her accounts.
Since July 28, she has been very occasionally present on social media. Detectives believe this might not be Veronica - but someone else logging into her account.
She has now not been heard of for a month and the situation looks more grave as each day passes.
DI Hitchon said: “Veronica had been missing before briefly when the family lived in London but there’d been nothing of note since she moved to Kettering.
“She’d had no argument. There was nothing.
“I saw her mum yesterday and she’s really worried about how she’s surviving down there.
“When she first went missing there was some contact on social media with her family and we think that at that time she was in Northampton.
“On July 27 she travelled by train from Northampton to Euston station.
“We’ve scoured CCTV in the area but it’s difficult because there are so many different systems.
“She hadn’t taken anything with her. No clothing, no money.
“We don’t even think she had a working mobile phone although she may have had a tablet.
“What’s most concerning is that her social media activity, which is normally very active, has dropped off.
“She used to go up to people in the street and ask to borrow or use their phone to make contact.
“She’s done this on three or four occasions this time but since the 28th of July, that’s stopped.”
Veronica’s family moved to the UK from their home in Romania in 2008 to make a better life for themselves. Veronica’s English is very good.
She is a huge fan of the rapper Chipmunk and detectives think she may attend the Notting Hill Carnival this weekend, where Metropolitan Police officers will be handing out flyers.
DI Hitchon added: “She’s an avid follower of Chipmunk. She likes music and there’s a chance she may be at the carnival this weekend.
“There’s been some very, very limited contact on social media in the past three weeks but someone could quite easily send messages on her behalf. We don’t know if these messages have come from Veronica.
“The longer this goes on, the more concerned we’re getting. A vulnerable 15-year-old girl with no means of contacting someone who is putting herself into vulnerable situations by approaching unknown men asking to use their phone.
“We’re taking this very seriously.”
Veronica has 1,000 Facebook friends and detectives hope one of these people will know where she is.
She is white, 5ft, with long straight black hair and brown eyes.
Anyone who knows where she is should call Northamptonshire Police on 101.
Thursday, July 21 - Veronica leaves her home in Kettering in the evening.
Wednesday, July 27 - Veronica travels from Northampton to Euston by train. She is then seen in Ponders End, Enfield by a friend.
Thursday, July 28 - Last known sighting of Veronica is at 5.15pm on in Brighton Terrace, Brixton, south London with a man.
Saturday, August 6 - police launch the first public appeal for Veronica.
Tuesday, August 9 - 19-year-old man arrested in connection with Veronica’s disappearance in Enfield. Later released on bail.
Tuesday. August 16 - Veronica’s dad Anton makes an emotional appeal for her to get in touch.
Friday, August 19 - A search warrant is executed at an address in the Spencer area of Northampton.
Saturday, August 20 - Following the enquiries in Northampton, a 26-year-old man from Romford, Essex, is arrested on suspicion of child abduction. Later released on bail.
Thursday, August 25 - Detectives say they will leaflet the weekend’s Notting Hill Carnival.
Friday, August 26 - DI Stuart Hitchon speaks to the Northants Telegraph to further appeal to people who may know where Veronica is.