26 Aug 2010

Four-year-old's body found in Gisborne river

6:15 pm on 26 August 2010

The body of a four-year-old boy who went missing in Gisborne just over a week ago has been found.

A member of the public on a surf ski found Lucas Ward's body in the Waimata River, 400 metres upstream from a jetty near his grandmother's property about midday on Thursday.

The boy disappeared from her home in Graham Road in the suburb of Kaiti on 17 August, prompting an extensive search.

The family had been holding out hope that the boy would be found alive, even after the official search was downgraded on Monday.

Inspector Sam Aberahama says the family is now grieving and very distressed.

Mr Aberahama says the discovery is a relief for police and searchers. He says even though the river was scoured many times, he is confident search teams did a good job.

A post-mortem will be conducted on Friday and the case referred to the coroner.