The family of Belfast schoolboy Noah Donohoe have said his disappearance and death “undoubtedly raise questions”, but they have called for an end to social media speculation.
In a statement last night, the family said it was “an extremely traumatic time” and thanked the public for “the outpouring of goodwill and love” they had received.
But they stressed that social media accounts, founded under Noah’s name seeking further information about his disappearance and death, did not have their permission. They asked anyone with information to contact the PSNI or victims’ support group, Relatives for Justice.
Noah was last seen in north Belfast on June 21. Six days later, his body was discovered in a storm drain close to where he went missing.
While police say they have no reason to suspect foul play in the 14-year-old St Malachy’s College pupil’s death, speculation has continued on social media.
The family, including mum Fiona, said: “We recognise the huge public concern of the entire population and we thank each and every one of you. So many people have been incredibly generous to us with practical support.
“This support includes providing pieces of information regarding Noah’s disappearance and death. Separately, some have also ventilated concerns on social media platforms.
“At this time, we are working with the PSNI on matters which are outstanding to the investigation and we are seeking answers to questions which arise. Noah’s disappearance and death undoubtedly raise questions; however public speculation and theory is unhelpful. We are dealing with the facts. We have seen a number of social media accounts which have been founded under Noah’s name seeking further information. These accounts do not have the family’s permission.
“Rather than ventilating any issue on social media platforms, we urge anyone with information regarding Noah’s disappearance and death to forward this information, including any photographic/CCTV footage to the PSNI or to Relatives for Justice (028) 9062 7171 email: firstname.lastname@example.org (please mark email Re: Noah).
“All information will be dealt with in strictest confidence.”
The family said they were are also represented by solicitor Niall Murphy of KRW Law.