Home Australia Samantha Murphy: Police make grim confession about endless search for missing Ballarat mother after dam discovery renewed hopes of finding her body

Samantha Murphy: Police make grim confession about endless search for missing Ballarat mother after dam discovery renewed hopes of finding her body

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Nigel Phair, a former federal police officer, believes it is unlikely Samantha Murphy's body (pictured) will be found five months after she disappeared.

A former police officer has said the likelihood of finding Samantha Murphy’s body decreases with each passing day as the four-month search continues.

The 51-year-old mother of three went missing during a morning run through Canada’s Ballarat State Forest on February 4.

Police are still no closer to finding her body, even though Patrick Orren Stephenson, 22, was charged with her alleged murder a month after she disappeared.

Hopes were raised that recovery efforts were a step closer after detectives found Ms Murphy’s phone in a dam 14 kilometers from her home on May 29.

But despite a “targeted” search operation last week, his body has yet to be found.

Nigel Phair, of UNSW’s Cyber ​​Security Institute, said that “as the days go by, it is becoming less and less likely” that Ms Murphy’s remains will be recovered.

Nigel Phair, a former federal police officer, believes it is unlikely Samantha Murphy’s body (pictured) will be found five months after she disappeared.

Detectives found Ms Murphy's discarded phone near a river bank on May 29 and carried out searches

Detectives found Ms Murphy’s discarded phone near a river bank on May 29 and conducted “targeted” searches in the area which yielded no results.

‘Obviously the phone was interesting because the body was supposed to have been in that lake, close to where they found it. “I guess divers have been through this several times and found nothing,” Phair said. told Yahoo News.

Phair, a former federal police officer, said the problem facing Victoria Police detectives is that they will one day have to divert their resources to other priorities.

“I think they can continue searching for much longer, the problem is the resources they put in, prioritizing this over what will become more urgent matters,” he added.

Ms Murphy, 51, disappeared during a morning run through Canada's Ballarat State Forest on February 4 and Patrick Orren Stephenson, 22, has since been charged with her murder.

Ms Murphy, 51, disappeared during a morning run through Canada’s Ballarat State Forest on February 4 and Patrick Orren Stephenson, 22, has since been charged with her murder.

‘There will always be a detective assigned to the case. But whether it’s the only case or it becomes one of their many cases, that’s what will happen over time as the next priority takes over.”

A new search was carried out over two days last week as officers searched a ‘specific area of ​​the forest.

“Detectives from the Missing Persons Team, as well as a range of specialist resources from across Victoria Police, were involved in the search,” a police statement read.

‘Since February, police have periodically carried out a series of small-scale investigations and searches as part of the current investigation.

“Samantha’s family has also been informed of the search.”

Phair said that even though Murphy’s phone was found, detectives are no closer to finding her today than they were four months ago.

Speaking from his experience in the police, Mr Phair believes detectives would be considering all possibilities, including whether there could have been more than one person involved in the disappearance.

At least one detective will remain assigned to the case while Ms. Murphy remains missing, he added.

Phair said the problem detectives face is their limited resources and the fact that one day they will be needed elsewhere.

Phair said the problem detectives face is their limited resources and the fact that one day they will be needed elsewhere.

Phair believes police officers are likely focusing on building their case against Stephenson, who has been behind bars since his arrest.

He said detectives would have already submitted their brief of evidence against him and would now be working to corroborate that evidence.

Ms Murphy’s phone and other items found during the search will be used in her case when it comes to court.

Phair added that although there appear to be many unanswered questions in the case, detectives may be holding back some crucial details for their case.

Several items located during the May 29 search in Buninyong are still being forensically assessed, including Ms Murphy’s phone.

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