'I just want to lay my Dad to rest': Daughter speaks of heartbreak as missing Grandad is 'presumed dead' seven years after disappearance
A missing Sunderland granddad is now ‘presumed dead’, seven years after he was last seen as his family deal with the heartache of his disappearance.
Robert Hutchinson’s loved ones have been distraught since the 56-year-old went missing after leaving his home in Corporation Road, Hendon, at 6.30pm on Monday, June 23, 2014.
His blue Nissan Micra, registration LT03 OZJ, was later found in Stewart Street, off Chester Road, with police identifying a man matching his description at the rear of the Chester’s pub at 11.05pm – but that is where the trace ends.
Northumbria Police launched a murder investigation, but his body has never been found.
Now his family, who have made repeated appeals for information, have reached the point where they can wind down his assets through a declaration of presumed death, which can only go ahead once someone has been missing for seven years.
Anyone with an interest must apply to Newcastle Civil Family Courts by Wednesday, July 28.
Robert’s disappearance continues to torture Paula, 37, her son Joshua Robert Hutchinson, 15, and Paula’s brother Gavin, 41, with the emotional anguish compounded by having to manage his two properties and other matters.
The process will also allow Paula to ensure his wish to pass his home on to Joshua is fulfilled.
“I would like someone to come forward with some information for us, so we can lay him to rest,” Paula said today.
"We have to go through this to get a death certificate, but it’s really head-battering to have to go through this as well.
"This will give us some closure, we’ll be able to move forward with his assets, but I still want to find out what happened to him.
"I get up every day and just think about the same questions, going around and around in my head.
"He didn’t have a will and I wish he had because we wouldn’t have had half the problems we have.
"I want to put that out there to people, get a will, because you never know what’s around the corner.”
Anyone with information can call 101 or Crimestoppers – which is offering a £10,000 reward for information – anonymously on 0800 555 111.