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Police appeal for help finding missing student after taxi journey places him in Loughton, Essex

Updated: Apr 1, 2021

Image credit: Met Police

Police investigating the disappearance of Richard Okorogheye are now conducting searches in Loughton, Essex, after a new confirmed taxi journey sighting last placed him in the area in the early hours of Tuesday 23 March.

Richard, 19, a student at Oxford Brookes University, left his family home in the Ladbroke Grove area of Kensington on the evening of Monday 22 March. He was reported missing on Wednesday 24 March.

Initial enquiries identified Richard leaving his home address and heading in the direction of Ladbroke Grove, W10 on Monday 22 March at approximately 8.30pm.

In a previously confirmed sighting on Monday 22 March, Richard was seen boarding the 23 bus southbound in Ladbroke Grove at 8.44pm. CCTV footage shows he was wearing all black and had a black satchel bag with a white ‘ADIDAS’ logo, worn across his lower back.

Further enquires have established that Richard then took a taxi journey from the W2 area of London to a residential street in Loughton, Essex. He was captured on CCTV walking alone on Smarts Lane, Loughton towards Epping Forest at 12:30am on Tuesday 23 March.

Detectives are working around the clock to trace his next steps after this sighting and have begun searches in and around the forest as well as carrying out door to door enquiries.

They are also working alongside specialist search teams and colleagues from Essex Police.

Detective Chief Inspector Nicki Beecher, from the Met’s Area West Public Protection Unit, said: “It has now been nine days since Richard was last seen in person and we remain as committed as ever to locating him and bringing him home to his family.

Image credit: Met Police

“Our officers are working extremely hard to piece together the facts in order to build a picture of Richard’s movements on the evening of Monday, 22 March.

“Latest information suggests he was last seen in Loughton in Essex and we are now focusing our attention here with specialist search officers from across the Met brought in to assist.

“Our enquiries also continue in the Ladbroke Grove, W10 area where local officers have been carrying out search patrols and also community patrols to gather information from local residents.

“I would once again like to renew our appeal to the public for any information which may assist with our enquiries. If you may have seen Richard - particularly in the Loughton area - or have any information at all, please contact police.”


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