15 Feb 2010

Mother appeals to missing daughter to make contact

9:49 am on 15 February 2010

The mother of a missing 15-year-old Wellington girl has appealed to her daughter to call home.

Olivia Rutherford was last seen by friends in central Wellington at about 6pm on Friday.

She had been reported missing earlier in the day when she failed to turn up at school.

Police say her disappearance is out of character and she may be distressed. They say they have grave concerns for her safety.

Officers on Sunday searched local parks and reserves.

A yellow and white bag she had been carrying was found on the City to Sea Bridge, that runs between Wellington's Civic Square and the lagoon at Frank Kitts Park.

The teenager's mother, Elizabeth Rutherford, is appealing for anyone who may have seen her daughter to call the police. She is asking her to call home, even if she is feeling overwhelmed.

Elizabeth Rutherford says her daughter usually keeps in regular contact using text messages, but she's not answering her cellphone.

Olivia Rutherford is described as light-skinned, of thin build, about 160 centimetres tall, with long strawberry blonde hair.

She was last seen wearing jeans, a white T-shirt and a blue cardigan.