Missing man is found safe and well

Eric Harding
Eric Harding

A MISSING man has been found safe and well 13 days after he disappeared.

A police search was launched after relatives of Eric Harding raised concerns about their loved-one’s whereabouts.

The investigation, which involved a sighting of Mr Harding on Merseyside, finally came to a close on Saturday when the 57-year-old was found in Hartlepool.

Mr Harding had been reported missing after boarding the 22 bus near his home in Hart Village, Hartlepool, and heading to Durham on Monday, April 4.

Officers’ concerns grew as days went by without any sign of him, and the police put out several appeals urging the public to help find him.

Hopes were raised when a man matching Mr Harding’s description was spotted at a store in Stoneycroft, on Merseyside, at about 7.15pm last Thursday.

Those investigating his disappearance were then able to confirm it was him by using security camera footage.

But he was still classed as missing until he was seen in person by a police officer, which happened in Hartlepool on Saturday.

A Cleveland Police spokeswoman said: “Missing Hartlepool man Eric Harding has been found safe and well in the Hartlepool area.

“Officers would like to thank the public and the media for their assistance in this matter.”

Hartlepool Police still have an outstanding missing person in Darren Waller, who has now been missing for more than three months.

The 36-year-old was last seen in the Foggy Furze area of the town at around 5.30pm on Sunday, January 9.

He is described as 5ft 8in, white, with a shaved head and tattoos on his hands and arms.

Anyone with information that could help detectives is asked to get in touch on (01642) 326326.