THE mother of a missing 32-year-old said she would ‘never stop’ looking for her daughter as a murder investigation was launched on Teesside.

Natalie Jenkins of Thornaby, near Stockton disappeared on Wednesday, December 11, after she was last seen leaving her home on Westbury Street at around 10am.

Ms Jenkins, who was this morning described by her mother as a ‘beautiful’ woman, was now considered to have come to “serious harm” a news conference heard.

The Northern Echo: Natalie Jenkins of Thornaby near StocktonNatalie Jenkins of Thornaby near Stockton

 

At Cleveland Police in Hemlington, Detective Chief Inspector Mark Dimelow leading the case revealed the force believed there was no evidence to suggest ‘proof of life.’

He said Ms Jenkins had not been in contact with friends or family and that she had no access to a bank account, passport or owned a permanent phone.

The Northern Echo: DCI Mark Dimelow, left, with Sylvia Jenkins at the news conference on Thursday morning Picture: JIM SCOTTDCI Mark Dimelow, left, with Sylvia Jenkins at the news conference on Thursday morning Picture: JIM SCOTT

Launching a murder investigation, Det Chf Insp Dimelow said: “Whilst there is no specific evidence that a crime has been committed, there is no proof of her life and in my professional judgement, I believe that she has come to serious harm.

“As a result, I have classified the case as one of suspected murder, and have launched a murder investigation.”

Since Ms Jenkins’ disappearance, a dedicated team of officers working on the case have captured more than 1,000 hours of CCTV, carried out house-to-house enquiries and spoken to hundreds of people as part of the search.

The Northern Echo: CCTV footage from 7.20pm on December 10 which shows Ms Jenkins in ThornabyCCTV footage from 7.20pm on December 10 which shows Ms Jenkins in Thornaby

At the conference, Det Chf Insp Dimelow revealed new CCTV footage had been released in their newly-formed murder investigation.

Footage which shows a figure believed to be Ms Jenkins continuing along Parliament Road in Middlesbrough towards Linthorpe Road was captured at around 7.55pm on December 10.

Previous CCTV footage showed Ms Jenkins in Thornaby at around 7.20pm that evening.

In a desperate plea for those with information to speak to police, Ms Jenkins’ mother Sylvia Jenkins at the conference said: “It is very difficult for me to be here today, but I know how important it is to ask the public for help.

“Natalie is very, very loved and has a family that really loves her. I would do anything for her, she’s my little girl, and I just want to now what has happened to her.”

The Northern Echo: Natalie Jenkins mother Sylvia Jenkins at the conference on Thursday morning Picture: JIM SCOTTNatalie Jenkins mother Sylvia Jenkins at the conference on Thursday morning Picture: JIM SCOTT

Ms Jenkins said there wasn’t a “minute that goes by” where she didn’t think about her daughter as she begged for people to come forward.

She said: “Someone knows what has happened to Natalie and if they come forward and tell police, I would help them.

“We will never stop looking for Natalie and this is never going to go away, I am asking for people to contact police if they have seen or heard anything that will bring my beautiful daughter home to me.”

After the news conference, Det Chf Insp Dimelow told The Northern Echo that the missing 32-year-old had moved in ‘circles of risk’ in her role as a sex worker, placing her in a vulnerable position.

The Northern Echo: An earlier image of Thornaby woman Natalie JenkinsAn earlier image of Thornaby woman Natalie Jenkins

He said: “Her lifestyle is clearly part of it, we know she was a sex worker, we know that she took drugs, these will have made her more vulnerable and she would have moved in circles of risk, so that is part of my line of inquiry.

“Initially, Natalie’s disappearance was dealt with as a missing from home enquiry and as more information became known with regards to proof of life and as an individual it became evident to me that sadly she has come to serious harm.”

When asked if the murder investigation raised concern for the safety of members of the public, Det Chf Insp said the force did not believe Ms Jenkin’s suspected murder was linked to other enquiries.

The Northern Echo: The news conference took place at Cleveland Police's Hemlington Safety hub Picture: JIM SCOTTThe news conference took place at Cleveland Police's Hemlington Safety hub Picture: JIM SCOTT

He added: “There’s dedicated staff working on this – my staff and myself are determined to find answers for Natalie’s family.

"Natalie's family are devastated by her disppearance – it has taken great courage for her (Sylvia) to be here today."

Ms Jenkins is described as a white female of very slim build, around 5ft 5inches tall with fair complexion and straight brown hair.

She has a neck tattoo saying ‘SWANN,’ a wrist tattoo saying ‘SWANN’ and a missing front tooth.

  • Those with information are urged to contact Cleveland Police on 101, or to report information anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800-555111.