She had spent New Year's Eve at her friend Ashley's house, on the Calypso development in Mijas Costa, to help look after her younger brother. The next day, New Year's Day, they went to the Calahonda market and returned to Ashley's house. At 10pm Amy Fitzpatrick said goodbye to her friend and set off for her home in Riviera del Sol, a walk of around two kilometres on a tarmacked path (except for a 50-metre unsurfaced stretch) but that was little-used. No one has seen her since. And that was 13 years ago.
The Irish teenager, who was then 15 years old, disappeared on that walk home without a trace. The Guardia Civil, who inspected the route she should have taken, found no evidence of an abduction, which is what her mother Audrey had feared had happened. Officers never ruled out that theory although they initially gave more credibility to the idea that Amy had run away of her own accord. She had apparently wanted to go and live with her father, who had stayed in Ireland when his marriage with her mother broke up. The teenager lived in Mijas with her mother, brother and her mother's partner, David Mahon.
Over the last 13 years the family have launched several campaigns and tributes to keep Amy's disappearance in the public eye. In 2010, her mother and her partner even offered a reward of a million euros for anyone who could provide information that would lead to the whereabouts of the young girl. The following year they started a campaign with the slogan 'Amy's Day', which took them around different towns in the province of Malaga on the first day of each month to remind people of the case.
In January 2012, the couple moved to Ireland, where Audrey's son Dean lived after moving back there a year after Amy's disappearance. But fate was to deal another huge blow to the Fitzpatrick family. Barely a year and a half later, in May 2013, Dean was fatally stabbed in a fight with his stepfather in Coolock, a district on the north side of Dublin, near the flat the family had moved into when they moved back to Ireland. He was 23.
Dave Mahon was accused of killing his stepson. At the trial, which he attended on the arm of Audrey, Dean and Amy's mother, he pleaded innocent and blamed the death on an accident or possible suicide, stating that the youth had stabbed himself. The jury cleared him of murder but found him guilty of manslaughter. In June 2016 he was sentenced to seven years in prison. His appeal was rejected.
"Don't forget Amy"
On the thirteenth anniversary of Amy's disappearance, her biological father, Christopher Fitzpatrick, wrote on social media, "As we say goodbye to a very tough 2020 please don't forget Amy. 13 years missing. Amy is missed so much and will never be forgotten. Always and forever in my heart. Until we meet again my princess. Dad xxx"
Anyone with any information should contact the Guardia Civil (Spain) on (+34) 636 079 619, the Garda Confidential line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda station in Ireland.
The Lucie Blackman Trust supports families with missing loved ones abroad. They run two 24-hour hotlines: Spain (+34) 951 242 878 and UK 02380 988 899. From the UK you can also use their 24/7 central freephone information hotline on 0800 098 8485. Calls are free from landlines but may be charged from mobiles. Alternatively, email information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you live in Ireland, phone Missing Persons Helpline Ireland on 1890 442 552. If you would prefer to remain anonymous, use their Help Bring Them Home confidential line 1800 911 999 or email email@example.com.