Body found in Darlington river search for missing boy

  • Published
Anas El-RafaiImage source, Family photo
Image caption,
Anas El-Rafai's family described him as "very popular"

A teenager has died after getting into difficulty in the River Tees.

Durham Police said the alarm was raised shortly after 17:00 BST on Monday after the 15-year-old entered the water at Broken Scar in Darlington.

The body of Anas El-Rafai, who was from the town, was found shortly before midnight.

His family described him as a "fit and healthy young man" who was "very popular at school" and said they were devastated by his death.

Image caption,
Flowers were left at the scene next to the River Tees

Police were aided in the search by Darlington Fire and Rescue Service, the North East Ambulance Service, Teesdale and Weardale Search and Mountain Rescue Team and underwater search teams.

Durham Police said the death was not being treated as suspicious and a file was being prepared for the coroner.

Image caption,
A local councillor said the river was notorious for its undercurrents

Councillor Jonathan Dulston, who grew up near Broken Scar, said it was "truly heartbreaking" and offered his condolences to the family.

"This river is notorious for its undercurrents and it's quite an unsafe river, so as a council we are trying to educate people around the dangers," he said.

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