Students join search for missing Luke Pearce

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STUDENTS are joining police today in the search for missing Luke Pearce.

Luke, 19, was reported missing on Sunday evening. He had been drinking with friends in Jimmy Allen’s on Saturday night and was last seen around 1.30 am walking along the river bank in Durham City heading from Baths Bridge towards the bandstand and Durham rowing club.

Luke is described as white, 6’ 2” tall with short ginger hair. He was wearing a blue polo shirt, blue jeans and white trainers.

Luke’s friends and fellow students will join the efforts to find him after receiving a safety briefing from officers this morning. The search focus remains along the riverbanks in the city, where Luke was last seen. Weardale and Teesdale Search and Rescue continue to help with river searches along with assistance from the Fire Service.

Professor Graham Towl, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Deputy Warden from Durham University, said: “We are very concerned for Luke’s safety. The students came to us and asked if there was anything they could do to help with the efforts to find him, and so we approached the officers leading the search to see how best they might be able to assist. Over 20 students will join officers today to help try and locate Luke, following a full safety briefing from the police. We would like to reiterate the appeal for anyone who might have information that could be useful to get in touch by calling Durham Constabulary on 101.”

Chief Inspector Andy Huddleston said: “We remain very concerned for Luke as this is completely out of character and there has been no trace of him since early hours of Sunday morning.

“We are specifically appealing for a couple who were seen walking along the river bank from Baths Bridge towards the bandstand at around 1.30am on Sunday morning to get in touch, as it is likely that they would have passed Luke. We don’t believe this couple were in any way connected with Luke’s disappearance, but think they were the last people to see him on the night and could have crucial information about his whereabouts.”

“Anyone with information that could help our enquiries can contact us by calling 101.”

Note to editors: The search location today will be area of where Luke was last seen – between Baths Bridge and Durham rowing club. Filming and photo opportunities will be available from late morning.