Search Continues for Australian Woman Who Went Missing on Sunday While Running

Samantha Murphy left her home at 7 a.m. to run in the Canadian State Forest, and hasn’t been seen or heard from since.

eucalyptus forest

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On Sunday morning, Samantha Murphy rose early and went for a run in the Canadian State Forest near her home outside of Melbourne in Australia. However, she never returned, and the search for the 51-year old mother of-three is now in its fourth day.

Murphy is an avid runner, and according to news reports, is known to go for a run nearly everyday. She knows the forest and surrounding urban areas very well, so her family is naturally concerned, as it would be out of character for Murphy to vanish like this.

She had her phone with her, and acting inspector Lisa MacDougall said that at one point it pinged in a town about 11K away, but that “inquiries are ongoing as to whether [the phone] is still on.”

“Obviously, phones can run out of battery, but that forms part of the investigation,” she told reporters on Monday.

The radius of the search isn’t completely remote, as the forest and the outskirts of the region where Murphy’s phone pinged is not far from urban areas. Other factors give an added urgency to the situation like the scorching temperatures in Victoria on Sunday. On the morning she disappeared, Murphy was captured by CCTV footage wearing a brown singlet and black mid-calf leggings, but it was unclear whether she had any food or water with her.

“It raises the urgency of the search for us,” said MacDougall, “and obviously we account for the fact that that will have an impact on someone’s health.”

Murphy is an active part of the local community, and has been involved with the Ballarat Centre of Music and Arts for more than 20 years. The Centre’s director, Paula Heenan told News.com.au, “She will do anything for anybody. She’s been a good parent helper.”

“There’s a lot of people in the community looking in different areas,” she continued. “There’s a lot of very concerned people looking for someone we love very much.”

A police spokesperson said that the police are continuing to “investigate the circumstances surrounding Samantha’s disappearance” and are “following up all information and any reports of sightings from the public.” The police are being aided in the hunt for Murphy by the Search and Rescue Squad, along with specialized officers from the dog squad, mounted branch, solo unit, and the air wing, among others. A journalist with The Courier reported that police said this has been one of the biggest responses to a search they’ve ever seen in the area.

Anyone who sees Murphy or has any information is urged to immediately contact the police.

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