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Force clarifies approach to Misper inquiry following criticism

The mother of missing Claudia Lawrence said she was not informed about planned searches in 2021, something the force denies.

North Yorkshire Police says it has made "several attempts at engagement" with the family of a woman who has been missing for 14 years, following allegations that the force has failed to keep them informed about the investigation.

Claudia Lawrence went missing in 2009 at the age of 35, with the investigation into her disappearance and suspected murder scaled back to reactive status in 2017 following a four-year review and reinvestigation.

Though in reactive status, investigative activity took place in August and September 2021 following the receipt of fresh intelligence.

This included fresh searches which Claudia's mother Joan Lawrence told local media she wasn't informed would be taking place.

In response to this, North Yorkshire has now confirmed she was told about the searches in person.

A statement read: "This was in advance of the media, or indeed the wider communities of York and North Yorkshire, becoming aware of the activity.

"Several attempts at engagement have taken place since the conclusion of the enhanced investigative activity in November 2021, some as recently as March 2023, to ensure that Claudia’s family have access to any continued support which may be required.

"North Yorkshire Police has consistently strived to maintain a professional and respectful relationship with Claudia’s family and this approach will continue."

The search of a lake and nearby woods just outside York did not uncover anything significant to the investigation.

Nine people have been questioned in total, but no charges have ever been brought.

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