Beds, Herts & Bucks

Leah Croucher: Missing teenager's sister 'clinging on to hope'

Jade and Leah
Image caption Jade Croucher (left) said she is very close to her sister Leah

The sister of a missing teenager has said it is "unbelievable" that she has "disappeared without a trace".

Leah Croucher, 19, went missing while walking to work in Milton Keynes on 15 February.

Her sister Jade Croucher said she was "clinging on to hope" that she would be found, ending the family's "nightmare".

Despite an extensive police operation, Miss Croucher has not been seen since. Thames Valley Police said it was committed to finding her.

Her sister Jade, 26, said: "How can someone just vanish without a trace? Even the police have said it is really unusual.

"She has been gone for 20 weeks with no news at all. That is extreme."

Image copyright Thames Valley Police
Image caption Police released a CCTV image of Leah Croucher walking to work on the day she disappeared

Miss Croucher was last seen by her parents at their home in Quantock Crescent in Milton Keynes at 22:00 GMT on 14 February.

Earlier in the evening she told them she was meeting a friend, but police said that was not the case and have appealed for information on where she was between 18:00 and 19:15.

CCTV showed her walking down Buzzacott Lane in Furzton, believed to be in the direction of her work, at about 08:15 the next day.

Three people reported possible sightings near Furzton Lake between 09:30 and 11:15.

"She got up like normal, as she would on any other morning, and followed the same route to work and for some reason she didn't make it there," Jade said.

Image caption Jade Croucher climbed Snowdon in Wales with her friend Emma

Jade climbed Snowdon on Saturday, raising more than £3,000 for the charity Missing People which is supporting her family.

"I just want to trigger someone's memory. All I can do as her sister is make sure people still know she is missing," she said.

"We are thinking about her every second of every day. We are living through something you would never expect and the pain and worry is immeasurable."

Jade said her sister was "a beautiful girl inside and out" and described her as quite shy but funny and witty, with a "personality which people warm to instantly".

Thames Valley Police said: "We continue to receive information into the incident room, including reports of potential sightings of Leah, all of which are assessed and investigated accordingly.

"The investigation will continue with dedicated resources to explore these and any new lines of enquiry that develop."

Image copyright Thames Valley Police
Image caption Police previously released images of boots and the "distinctive" hoodie Leah Croucher was wearing

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