POLICE are probing reported sightings of missing dad Darren Waller that came to light after his daughters’ emotional TV appeal.
The Hartlepool dad-of-three is said to have been spotted just down the road in Redcar, Leamington Spa in Warwickshire, and Cornwall, on the south coast.
Investigators were told about them after Darren’s brave children, Kayleigh, 16, Ellie, eight, and Leah, five, appeared on BBC’s Missing programme on Tuesday morning.
They reached out to viewers with a tearful plea, that included a heartbreaking letter by little Leah, as they haven’t seen their dad for four months.
But detectives on the case have issued a note of caution about the latest news, saying that none of the sightings have been confirmed, and the Leamington Spa and Cornwall reports were made anonymously so are hard to follow-up.
Darren’s ex-wife Lisa Gleaves, who remained friends with Darren after their split, was however pleased that the long trip to the London studio has sparked a reaction.
Lisa, 36, of the town’s Kells Grove, said: “We don’t know if anything will come of them, and we’ve been told they can be hard to follow-up on, but you have to be hopeful.
“It’s been good to get the appeal further afield and it seems to be working because they’ve had calls.
“Now we just have to wait to see if the police get anything, they said they’ll let us know as soon as they do.”
All three sightings are said to have taken place over a four-day period starting May 5.
Detective Sergeant Peter Carr, of Hartlepool CID, said: “We have received three leads as a result of the programme and while we will be looking at these in more detail I would stress that these are unconfirmed sightings at this stage.
“Two of these calls were from anonymous sources so that does limit the information we can get as we can’t speak to the original caller. But we will be robust in exploring what was said.”
Darren, who lived in a flat in Alma Street, Hartlepool, was last seen by his children in the Foggy Furze area of Hartlepool at about 5.30pm on Sunday, January 9.
He was wearing a light blue sweater with dark stripes across the chest, dark blue jeans, white trainers and had an earring in his left ear.
He is described as 5ft 8ins tall, white, with a shaved head and tattoos on his hands and arms.
Anyone with information is asked to call Cleveland Police on (01642) 326326.
Missing People also has a confidential, free-to-ring service on 0800 700740 that Darren is asked to ring for advice and support.