16 Jun 2016

Search for Emily comes to an end

8:01 pm on 16 June 2016

Police have ended their search for two-year-old Emily Saunders, who went missing in Poerua River on the West Coast.

The toddler was in a four-wheel-drive vehicle that became partially submerged while crossing the river near Harihari last Thursday.

Three people, including Emily's parents, managed to escape the vehicle, but Barry Petrie, in his 60s, whose body was found on Friday, and the toddler were swept away.

West Coast area commander Inspector Mel Aitken said that, sadly, the week-long search for Emily must now end.

She said the police and search and rescue had exhausted all possibilities and had not been able to find her.

In a statement, Emily's family thanked the community and those involved in the search.

"We would also like to express our gratitude to our community, the numerous groups and organisations that have helped our family in many ways during this time," the statement said.

Harihari, West Coast

Photo: GOOGLE MAPS

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