Body is found in search for missing six-year-old Lucas Dobson who fell into the River Stour on a fishing trip four days ago
Lucas Dobson, six, fell into the water on Saturday while on a ‘family fishing trip’
A body was found this morning following a major search for a six-year-old boy who fell into a river four days ago.
The family of Lucas Dobson, who fell into the River Stour at Sandwich in Kent on Saturday, have been told of the find, but the body is yet to be formally identified.
Lucas went missing after he slipped into the river while on a fishing trip with his family. His father and two adults jumped into the water in to try to rescue him but he was swept away by a strong current.
More than 200 volunteers helped in the search, with some coming from outside the county to take part in the rescue.
They gathered in groups and searched areas near the River Stour alongside police officers, Kent Fire and Rescue Service crews and HM Coastguard.
Chief Inspector Mark Weller of Kent Police said: ‘This is a deeply tragic and upsetting incident for all concerned, and Lucas’ family are understandably devastated.
A police officer enters part of the River Stour in Kent on Monday during the search for Lucas
‘We were inundated with offers of assistance from members of the public, who turned out in large numbers to help search for Lucas.
‘I know his family are very grateful and touched by the support provided, and I too would like to offer my own personal thanks.
‘I would also like to recognise the efforts of our partners from Kent Fire and Rescue Service, HM Coastguard, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and others who assisted in the search for Lucas.’
Initial police enquiries continued today, but the force said the death was not being treated as suspicious.
Kent Police officers from the search and marine unit scour a section of the Stour on Monday
Yesterday, Mr Weller said the support from volunteers had been ‘incredible’, enabling officers to quickly search a wide area and to rule out several locations.
Experts from the emergency services used specialist equipment to find Lucas – including sonar detectors, underwater cameras, divers, dogs and drones.
On Monday night, Lucas’s aunt, Maciee Stanford, shared a post on Facebook showing pictures of her and Lucas and candles that were lit by members of the community in support of the family.
She wrote: ‘Our community is strong and has helped us as much as they can through this hard time for my family and I.
Search teams scoured the river for Lucas on Monday on what was the third day of the search
‘I cannot begin to express how grateful we are for every single person out there that has turned up shared likes donated anything because it all helps it really does.’
Vigils were held in towns across the South East of England for the missing schoolboy on Monday, while Twitter users shared images of lit candles under the hashtag £LightUpTheCoastForLucas in solidarity with his family.
CJ Barr, 16, attended a gathering in Aylesham, which she said was attended by around 200 people who were asked to wear red – Lucas’s favourite colour.
‘It was a lovely environment to see everyone in red and putting their candle down for Lucas,’ Miss Barr said. ‘I hope the vigil shares how positive everyone needs to be.’