NO FOUL play is suspected in the heartbreaking death of previously missing teen Noah Donohoe, whose today was discovered in Belfast yesterday (Saturday June 27).
The 14-year-old went missing last Sunday, June 21, in a disappearance that sparked a huge search operation across the local area.
Noah was last seen in the Shore Road region of north Belfast around 6.11pm that night where he was seen falling off his bike and acting strangely.
That led police to believe he may have sustained a head injury in the fall.
That theory looks an increasingly likely scenario after the remains of the teenager were found in a storm drain in the north of the city.
The PSNI says that at this stage there is no evidence to suspect foul play.
PSNI Superintendent Muir Clark said the storm drain complex where Noah’s body was discovered was almost one kilometre long, explaining the delay in finding his remains.
Officers had been searching the complex for a number of days this week before he was found.
Mr. Clark said: "We did have access to the storm drain complex and it has been searched over the last number of days before we got to the end of the complex."
"It's an extremely challenging environment in which to work and that is why it has taken the length of time to go through that complex," he added.
"In my 30 years in the police, this is one of the most unusual missing person inquiries that I have dealt with."
The body was recovered from the North Belfast area just before 9.45am.
While police had "no official identification" they believe it is the missing teenager.
First Minister Arlene Foster described the discovery as “absolutely devastating”.
"The community acted as one in the search & I know they will also support Noah’s family at this time of heart-rending grief," she said.
The DUP leader also paid tribute to police, rescue groups and the wider community for their "tireless efforts" in trying to find Noah and bring him home.
Her sentiments were echoed by Deputy First Minister Michelle O'Neill said news was "heartbreaking".
"The whole community has been left numb after six days of searches. Sincere sympathy and condolences to his mother Fiona, family and friends at this awful time," she added.