Body found in search for missing man, 61, in North East town
A body of a man who went missing after leaving a North East hospital has been found in a residential area.
Northumbria Police confirmed they have found the body of Lesley Barrass, 61, in the Birtley Road area of Washington today (March 29).
Mr Barrass was first reported missing after leaving the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead at about 6.50pm on Monday (March 27).
Shortly before his disappearance, he briefly spoke to a family member on the phone, but failed to return to his Columbia home and officers subsequently launched an appeal for information.
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Speaking on the incident, Detective Chief Superintendent Lyn Peart, of Northumbria Police, said: “This is a terribly sad outcome and is an update that we did not want to deliver.
"Our thoughts are with Lesley’s loved ones as they attempt to come to terms with what has happened.
“We will offer them any support they need and I’d ask that everyone respects their privacy.
“I would like to thank everyone who played their part in the search for Lesley – including the officers and staff out looking for him and the wider community who shared our appeal.
“We are sad that we couldn’t bring you a more positive update.”
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Formal identification is yet to take place but officers do believe the body is that of Lesley.
Mr Barrass' family have been notified and have been offered support by police at this devastating time.
Police do not believe there to be any third-party involvement in his death and a report will be made for the coroner.