Crimestoppers offer £10k reward for information leading to recovery of William McCormick's body
A £10,000 reward has been offered by Crimestoppers for information leading to the recovery of Northern Ireland murder victim William 'Pat' McCormick's body.
Mr McCormick was last seen walking down Castle Street in Comber at around 10.45pm on Thursday May 30.
The father-of-four's disappearance was initially treated as a missing persons case, but it was quickly changed to a murder inquiry after police reviewed evidence.
Detective Chief Inspector Pete Montgomery revealed on Thursday that Crimestoppers has put up a £10,000 reward in a bid to locate Mr McCormick's body.
He said: "I believe Pat was murdered in and around the vicinity of Castle Street sometime after 10.45pm on Thursday the 30th of May. I have previously released CCTV footage.
"Pat's family are absolutely devastated. I have been speaking to his mother this week and she tells me she hasn't been able to eat."
DCI Montgomery read out a statement on behalf of Mr McCormick's family.
It read: "We would like to give a massive thank you to the PSNI and all the volunteers for all their hard work in trying to find Pat and give him justice.
"A special thanks must go to all the people of Comber and surrounding areas for their help and support.
"We as a family are heartbroken and devastated at the loss of our Pat. We ask for further help and information to bring him home for a proper funeral that Pat and us deserve. Please pass on any information that you know to the police or Crimestoppers."
Police are attempting to trace the movements of a blue Ford Transit van that was seen travelling along the Old Ballygowan Road out of Comber at around 2pm on Friday May 31. DCI Montgomery asked anyone who has dashcam footage of the van to get in touch with detectives.
Police are also attempting to locate Mr McCormick's phone and have released an image of a his mobile phone cover.
"If you know where Pat's body is, please contact Crimestoppers and give them that information. I will never know your identity and you then can claim that reward. Please, if you know where he is, give his family back Pat."
Police believe Mr McCormick's body was removed from flats on Castle Street in a wheelie bin.
The PSNI has also released CCTV footage of Mr McCormick's last known movements before he disappeared.
DCI Montgomery said: “Today I would also like to make an appeal for people to look out for Pat’s distinctive mobile phone flip cover – black with red stripes. I’ve released an image of an identical cover. His iPhone SE still remains unaccounted for too. It could be broken, smashed or in pieces.
He continued: “I’ve carried out a number of land and water searches and detectives continue to examine hundreds of hours of CCTV footage. This has all been extremely helpful as well as the significant amount of information I’ve received during my investigation. I would like to echo Pat’s family’s thanks to the community for their help – the information you are providing really is making a difference.”
Anyone with information about the investigation or the whereabouts of Pat should contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Belfast Telegraph Digital