'People can't imagine what this feels like' - sister of Lisa Dorrian makes emotional plea as searches continue
The sister of missing Bangor woman Lisa Dorrian has made an emotional plea for those who know where her body is buried to come forward and help police locate her remains.
Joanne Dorrian was speaking at a police press conference at Ballyhalbert Caravan Park as searches for her sister's body entered a second day.
Lisa was last seen alive at the caravan park on February 27 2005, police believe she was murdered and her body buried somewhere in the vicinity.
Nobody has ever been charged in connection with her murder.
Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy is leading the investigation and said the searches had been prompted by "new information" but wouldn't be drawn further.
Joanne said that her family could never have imagined Lisa may be buried in the area.
"When Lisa first went missing we walked these fields, we thought we were just looking for her because she had just ran out in the night and she'd fallen and maybe just passed away in the cold," she said
"Obviously we then knew that the police were looking at it as a murder investigation.
"To think that Lisa could be here where we are today, it's just so hard to imagine. We're grateful for everything the police are doing to find Lisa and to give her what she deserves."
Joanne described the impact Lisa's disappearance had on the Dorrian family and appealed for anyone with information to come forward.
"People can't imagine what this feels like, they can't imagine what it feels like not knowing where she is," she said.
"My mum passed away a few years ago and she never got the answers that she needed. It has ruined her life and it has ruined our lives, none of us have been the same ever since this has happened.
"This is for Lisa, this is not for us. The people that know where she is knew Lisa and knew the kind of person that she was. They knew the funny person that she was and I'd just ask them to remember that and if they can come forward and help us to get some sort of peace, that's all that we can ask for."
Detective Superintendent Murphy said that he believed the answers to Lisa's murder "remained in Ballyhalbert".
More than 400 searches have taken place across Northern Ireland for Lisa's body, but police have decided to "refocus efforts locally on Ballyhalbert and events of the day she disappeared".
Detective Superintendent Murphy said the new searches had been prompted by technological advances and new information provided to police.
He said the answers to Lisa's disappearance were "held by a small number of individuals" and appealed to those involved to contact police directly before the "net tightens".
Belfast Telegraph Digital