Police to stop Sophie search after the weekend
- Credit: Norfolk Police
Proactive police searches for missing student Sophie Smith are to end once the weekend is over.
Norfolk police say the searches for the missing Gorleston student will not carry on from Monday, but added they will react to any fresh information received.
The news came as Sophie's family said money raised from a Justgiving site set up after she went missing should be donated to mental health charities.
A volunteer search crew took to the skies as well yesterday as the search continued for Sophie Smith.
A Cessna 210 belonging to the charity Sky Watch Civil Air Patrol flew over the coast in the morning for one hour around Sophie's native Gorleston looking for any signs of the 21-year-old, who has not been seen since Boxing Day.
You may also want to watch:
Graham Broom, chief pilot of the organisation, said the plane had a pilot and three observers and that they were 'looking to get more aircraft up in the future'.
Sophie, who studies at the University of East Anglia and suffers from severe anxiety and depression, was last seen at just after 3am on Boxing Day, prompting extensive searches and a huge community reaction.
- 1 Norfolk campsite voted third best in UK
- 2 Tax inspectors probe 240 furlough fraud cases in Norfolk and Suffolk
- 3 Road cleared after three-vehicle collision on A47
- 4 Driver in hospital after BMW car ends up in ditch
- 5 9 pubs and restaurants which have had lockdown makeovers
- 6 Man charged after cannabis factory and 300 plants found above pizza takeaway
- 7 Early hours arrests as part of 'ongoing police investigation'
- 8 Hospital opens new £625,000 cancer wellbeing and support centre
- 9 £5m roadworks on A47 cause delays - and months more to come
- 10 Lorry driver admits causing deaths of two people in A47 crash
On Thursday police revealed the student had left a note at her Avondale Road home disclosing her intentions to walk into the sea.
A Facebook group devoted to finding her has attracted more than 30,000 members, with Tom Mardell - one of the group's administrators - also conducting his own search of the coastline.
Martin Knowles, Sophie's father, said this week he believes in his heart and mind that Sophie is still out there somewhere.
Sophie's mother, Lynn Shaw, said she was now fearing the worse for her 'little girl' and urged anybody suffering from anxiety or depression not to face it alone.
A Justgiving page was set up this week to raise funds for search supplies, however, at the family's request this was later changed to benefit mental health causes.
The Samaritans are free to call at any time, from any phone on 116 123. They are there around the clock, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.