Officer leading search for missing Sheffield teenager: ‘Language difficulties and cultural differences have made search even harder’

Language difficulties and cultural differences have made police’s job in finding a missing Sheffield teenager even harder, according to the officer leading the search.

Supt Paul McCurry, who is leading the search for 16-year-old Pamela Horvathova, who is of Roma Slovak heritage, said cultural traditions meant she was not reported missing for six days.

Pamela Horvathova

Pamela Horvathova

Language difficulties have also meant it has been hard for officers to commnicate with the Roma Slovak community.

The officer said: “Each missing person is reviewed by an officer, an inspector and a detective and then after a period of time it is reviewed by a senior officer.

“This case has been made really difficult because it’s difficult for us to communicate with her family and wider network.”

Supt McCurry said Pamela’s family do not speak English and added it was ‘usual’ for Romani girls to go missing for a few days but this case was unusual given the amount of time she has not been seen for.

Supt Paul McCurry. Picture Scott Merrylees

Supt Paul McCurry. Picture Scott Merrylees

He also asked for a member of the public to act as a ‘facilitator’ between officers and the Roma Slovak community.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Anyone with any information should call police on 101, quoting incident number 941 of December 24, 2018.

If you see Pamela call 999.