Search for runner and mum-of-three who vanished six days ago

By Isaac M February 10, 2024

Specialist investigators in Australia have joined the search for a mother-of-three who has been missing since she left her home to go for a run six days ago.

Missing persons detectives are now spearheading the search for Samantha Murphy, who vanished without a trace on Sunday.

She was last seen leaving her home in Eureka Street, Ballarat, at around 7am, Victoria Police said.

“There are significant concerns given it has now been six days without her being sighted or any signs of her current whereabouts,” the force said.

“Her disappearance is considered extremely out of character.”

Local officers, rescue workers, mounted police and a dog squad are involved in the search.

Teams have been searching local bushland for the married 51-year-old.

Police have also released two images of her – including one before she left for her run, captured on CCTV at her home.

She was last seen wearing black half-length leggings and a maroon/brown coloured vest.

Samantha Murphy.
Pic: Victoria Police
Image:
A home CCTV image of the mother-of-three before she left for a run. Pic: Victoria Police

They hope someone recognises her and can provide any information about her movements since Sunday morning.

Police are urging everyone in the Ballarat East and Mount Helen areas, particularly around the Canadian Forest, to check their CCTV for any possible sightings.

‘People don’t just vanish into thin air’

Her family has also appealed for help, with her husband Mick, telling reporters: “People just don’t vanish into thin air.

“Someone’s got to know something.”

Her eldest daughter Jess said through tears: “Mum’s a really strong woman, and she’s far too determined to give up this fight.

“I know she’s out there somewhere. So if you could please continue to search for her to give us something to work with, we’d really appreciate it.”

She added: “Mum, we love you so much and we miss you, and we need you at home with us.

“Please come home soon. I can’t wait to see you and give you the biggest hug when I do, and to tell you off for giving us so much stress. I love you.”

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Detective Acting Superintendent Mark Hatt said: “I want to be clear that at this time, we have nothing immediate to indicate there is anything sinister behind Samantha’s disappearance.

“We still have a number of avenues of enquiry to pursue and the search to try and locate her is ongoing.

“However, it is especially concerning that we have now gone six days without any contact from her or any potential sightings.”

He added: “I know this is an incredibly difficult time for her family and friends, who are without answers and no doubt struggling to understand what has happened.”

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