Missing Madalina Cojocari: What Do Her Mom & Stepfather Know?

CORNELIUS, N.C. – New details in the case of missing Madalina Cojocari. The search for the 11-year-old is now the FBI’s “Most Wanted: Case of the Week.” A new arrest sheet released Wednesday shows that Madalina’s mother, Diana Cojocari, told investigators that she believed her husband “put the family in danger” but did not know what happened to Madalina. Diana said she contacted family in Moldova, who told her to call the police, but Diana hesitated. She said she was worried it might start a “conflict” between her and her husband, Christopher Palmiter.

Diana also said Madalina’s backpack and some clothes were missing. Diana Cojocari and Christopher Palmiter are charged with failure to report the disappearance of a child to law enforcement. At last check, they’re still in jail. Palmiter’s bond is $200,000. Diana’s bond is $250,000. The DA says she has already hindered the investigation. If she does post bond, she will be required to wear an electronic monitoring device.

Madalina was last seen getting off at the school bus stop near her home on November 21st. On December 12th, a Bailey Middle School resource officer and a counselor visited the family home but no one answered the door. Two days later, Madalina’s mother called the counselor saying she would bring the girl to school for a meeting the next day. She showed up that meeting at the school without Madalina, and that’s when she admitted Madalina has been missing since November 23rd.

Diana Cojocari told police she and Madalina’s stepfather, Christopher Palmiter, had an argument the night before Madalina disappeared. She says the next morning, Palmiter left for two days and went to his family home in Michigan to “recover some items.” When he returned on the 26th, the couple questioned each other about where Madalina was, but both said they didn’t know. Madalina’s mother told police she did not report the little girl missing because she was worried it might cause a “conflict” between her and Palmiter.

This episode features:
WCCB TV’s Morgan Fogarty
WCCB News Edge Contributor Ashley Anderson