Missing Persons Week 2015: Missing Persons Stephen Lapthorne & Michelle Pope
Kunstenaar : TheNSWPolice
Uitsig : 1539
National Missing Persons Week 2015 began today to raise awareness of the issues and impacts surrounding missing persons. The annual campaign will continue until Saturday (8 August 2015), while the official launch involving the Australian Federal Police and NSW Police Force will take place tomorrow (Monday 3 August 2015) at Customs House, Circular Quay. Police are renewing their appeals for information, as part of the week-long campaign, to help locate a couple who went missing from Sydney’s North Shore more than 30 years ago. Stephen Lapthorne, aged 21 at the time of his disappearance, was last seen leaving his home on Wyuna Ave at West Pymble with his girlfriend Michelle Pope, then aged 18, on 25 August, 1978. The pair was travelling in a lime green-coloured 1977 Bedford CF van, bearing registration ‘SL710’, and were believed to be travelling to Michelle’s home in Berowra. The van also featured a four-inch dark green horizontal band along each side, chrome plated mag wheels and a 150cm aerial in the centre of the roof with a clip-on aerial above the driver’s window. The couple have not been seen or heard from since and their vehicle has never been located. Detectives from Kuring Gai Local Area Command are continuing their investigation into the circumstances surrounding the couple’s disappearance, including the possibility they met with foul play. In August 2005, then Deputy State Coroner Carl Milovanovich held an inquest into the couple's disappearance and issued death certificates for both, before handing down an open finding as to the date, time and cause of death. Former Police Minister, Carl Scully, also approved a reward of $100,000 for information about the case that leads to an offender being charged and convicted, which remains in place today. Stephen is described as being of Caucasian appearance, about 175-180cm tall, with light brown shoulder-length hair and a moustache, blue eyes and of a medium build. He was last seen wearing a yellow and white-coloured chequered shirt, cream-coloured trousers and brown shoes. Michelle is described as being of Caucasian appearance, about 175-180cm tall, with brown hair, blue eyes and of a medium build. She was last seen wearing a bone-coloured dress and red sandals. Anyone with information about the disappearance of Stephen or Michelle is urged to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or use the Crime Stoppers online reporting page: https://www1.police.nsw.gov.au/. Information you provide will be treated in the strictest of confidence. We remind people they should not report crime information via our Facebook and Twitter pages. This year’s Missing Persons Week campaign is urging people to ‘Follow Your Instincts.’ If you suspect a friend or family member has gone missing, you don’t have to wait 24 hours to take action, ‘Follow Your Instincts’ and report the matter to police immediately.