Noah Donohoe: Family say public speculation about disappearance and death 'unhelpful'
THE family of Noah Donohoe have described public speculation about his disappearance and death as "unhelpful" as they continue to work with the PSNI.
In a statement, relatives also thanked the public for the "outpouring of good will and love we have received since Noah went missing".
"It has been an extremely traumatic time and this love is truly supporting us," they said.
The 14-year-old from south Belfast went missing on June 21, sparking a huge search operation that finally ended six days later when a specialist team recovered his body from a storm drain in the north of the city.
The St Malachy's College pupil was believed to have been severely disoriented after falling off his bike and sustaining a head injury.
He cycled into Northwood Road where he is believed to have entered a large culvert behind homes.
While police said there was no evidence of foul play, speculation has continued on social media.
In a statement issued last night through legal firm KRW Law, Noah's family said his disappearance and death "undoubtedly raise questions" but "public speculation and theory is unhelpful".
"We recognise the huge public concern of the entire population and we thank each and every one of you," they said.
"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."
The statement added: "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) 90627171 email: email@example.com (please mark email Re: Noah).
"All information will be dealt with in strictest confidence."
The family said they wanted to "express our continued gratitude for the outpouring of good will and love we have received since Noah went missing".
"The family once again wish to thank everyone who has helped us to date and hope we can rely on the public for their continued support and help," they added.