'Britain's worst mum': Remember Karen Matthews, who kidnapped her own daughter for the reward? Here's what she's up to now
The woman had made numerous public appeals for any information regarding her child's disappearance, even though she knew exactly where her child was all along.
Karen Matthews, the woman who has unofficially been crowned "Britain's Worst Mum", has been spotted shopping at Mothercare as her daughter, Shannon, celebrated her 20th birthday on September 9. 43-year-old Matthews was seen looking through toys and baby grows in a small town that lies in the south of England, where she moved to after she was released from prison. The mother, who has seven children, had been sent to jail for eight years in 2008 after she faked the abduction of her daughter in a case that shocked the nation at the time. Shannon had only been 9-years-old at the time and had been drugged and kept hidden under a bed.
The mother had planned to use the situation to her advantage and get the reward money for finding her own daughter. She was seen all by herself last week. Matthews wore a checked shirt along with sunglasses while she was seen holding a carrier bag and a Super Dry satchel. She was seen a little later on the same day eating food from McDonald's on a public bench after she went shopping in Poundland. The Sun reported that Matthews is all set to go under a new identity.
Karen Matthews goes incognito— CharlieAdamno1Fan (@FanAdamno1) September 9, 2018
The woman had been convicted for kidnap, false imprisonment, and perverting the course of justice after the vile abduction plot of hers started gaining more and more attention in the country. Shannon, who celebrated her 20th birthday on September 9, had suddenly disappeared from her home in Dewsbury Moor, West Yorks, when she was 9-years-old.
This launched a month-long campaign to find the child as the authorities, as well as hundreds of volunteers, scoured the area in a desperate search for the missing child. Matthews could also be seen making numerous public appeals for any information regarding her child's disappearance, even though she knew exactly where Shannon was all along. The authorities found the girl drugged and tied up to the base of a bed in a home in the nearby area of Batley Kerr. She had been found in an apartment that belonged to Michael Donovan, who is the uncle of Matthews' former boyfriend Craig Meehan, who did not have anything to do with the kidnapping as such but was still guilty of being the woman's accomplice.
The pair of them made a detailed plot to claim the £50,000 that was being offered as reward money for finding the young girl. Donovan was also sent to jail after the two of them were caught. Matthews, however, has maintained that she still did not have anything to do with her daughter's kidnapping. She said in an interview in May this year: "From the start, I didn’t know where she was. Others were involved. I didn’t have a clue. You can’t kidnap your own child. I know the truth and I wasn’t involved in it. I still have nightmares thinking that it’s all going to happen again."