Northern Ireland

Schoolboy Noah Donohoe died by drowning, postmortem shows

Schoolboy Noah Donohoe with his mum Fiona.
Schoolboy Noah Donohoe with his mum Fiona. Schoolboy Noah Donohoe with his mum Fiona.

A post mortem examination has found that schoolboy Noah Donohoe died as a result of drowning.

The family of the St Malachy's pupil have not been told if the teenager suffered any head injury prior to his death, despite speculation that he may have had concussion from a fall.

Noah disappeared on June 21 and his body was recovered from a storm drain in north Belfast six days later.

READ MORE: Timeline of Noah Donohoe's disappearanceOpens in new window ]

It is now also known that Noah was travelling to Cave Hill country park to meet friends on the day of his disappearance, to do work towards a Duke of Edinburgh award.

The teenager had his laptop with him for the project which he was keen to gain extra credits for during his time off school.

The alarm was raised when he never showed up.

It is thought he may have taken a wrong turn from his home in south Belfast on his way to Cave Hill and ended up in the North Queen Street, Shore Road area instead.

Police have Noah's phone and laptop and the family are keen to have these returned to them, but have not yet been told if the PSNI have examined the GPS on the phone.

They are desperate to know if the phone's mapping system will give any information on the final movements of the teenager, who was the only child of his heartbroken mother Fiona.

The family said at the time that mother and son "were each other’s world".

Noah Donohoe was a year 10 pupil at St Malachy's College, Belfast
Noah Donohoe was a year 10 pupil at St Malachy's College, Belfast Noah Donohoe was a year 10 pupil at St Malachy's College, Belfast

Noah's mobile phone was found in the early days of the investigation, but police had made a specific appeal for help in locating his green backpack.

It contained his Lenovo laptop and was recovered several days later. The family were told that it was to be examined by forensic experts but have not been given any details since.

The distressed family have instructed solicitor Niall Murphy of KRW Law to help them get answers to a number of unanswered questions.

Last week the family were told that police were to carry out a leaflet drop and door to door enquiries in the area Noah went missing, to appeal for further information about his last movements.

After receiving no further information the family contacted police yesterday and were told it had taken place, but that the PSNI were not able to share details of the leaflet with the grieving family.

The Irish News asked the PSNI for a copy of the leaflet and details of when door to door enquiries had taken place.

A PSNI spokesperson said: "Police have not conducted a leaflet drop at this stage".

The family have also never been shown CCTV footage that police say shows Noah, naked, cycling in the Northwood area of north Belfast. This was believed to be one of the last sightings of the teenager.

The Irish News asked could we have still shots from this footage as part of the wider appeal for information.

The PSNI declined this request saying the release of CCTV images must comply with the National Police Chiefs’ Council policy which govern this process.

The disappearance of the popular young grammar school pupil caused a widespread outpouring of grief and sympathy.

Anyone with information regarding Noah's disappearance or sightings of the teenager on the day he disappeared, Sunday June 21, are asked to contact Relatives for Justice or call 02890627171.

Noah's funeral: