Theo Hayez is due to fly home in a week. Picture: Instagram
Theo Hayez is due to fly home in a week. Picture: Instagram

HUNT FOR CLUES: Fears for safety of missing teen

UPDATE, 12pm: CONCERNS are growing for missing backpacker Theo Hayez, who has not used his mobile phone or made any financial transactions since May 31. 

Police today renewed their appeal for public assistance to help locate the Belgian teen, who went missing from Byron Bay.

Theo, 18, was last seen about 11pm on Friday, May 31, at a hotel on Jonson Street.

Police were alerted on Thursday, June 6, when he failed to return to his hostel and could not be contacted or located.

Serious concerns are held for his welfare as his passport and personal belongings were all located at the hostel.

Chief Inspector Matthew Kehoe from Tweed/Byron Police District is leading the search and said assistance from the community is sought.

He said it appeared Theo had not made any financial transactions since his disappearance or utilised his mobile phone.

"We believe that someone must have seen Theo after he left the licensed premises," Chief Insp Kehoe said.

"I am appealing for anyone that has information or dashcam footage from Jonson or Tennyson streets around 11pm on Friday 31 May 2019, to come forward.

"We have a large amount of resources searching again today in bushland that is towards the east and northeast of the town.

"Although Theo has only been in Australia for a short time we are advised that this disappearance is completely out of character for him.

"Any information or sightings of Theo would greatly assist investigators."

Theo is described as being of Caucasian appearance, approximately 180cm to 190cm tall, with a thin build and blond hair. He was last seen wearing a black hooded jumper, beige pants and black shoes.

Anyone with information is urged to contact police.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.

 

UPDATE, 11am: POLICE are going door to door in Byron Bay in the hopes of finding out any information that may assist in the search for a missing Belgian teenage backpacker.

A full team of SES crews and police are searching bushland along Cape Byron after 18-year-old Theo Hayez was reporter missing last week when he didn't return to his backpacker accommodation in Byron Bay.

He was last seen leaving Cheeky Monkey club on May 31.

Police and SES have also been spotted walking through the streets knocking on people's doors as part of their investigation into the man's disappearance.

More to come.

 

UPDATE, 9.30am: AS THE search continues for missing 18-year-old Belgian backpacker Theo Hayez, the community is rallying on social media behind the teen's family and friends.

While there's been no official call for the public to assist in the search, Bryon Bay youth worker Nicqui Yazdi, who also manages several social media pages, said it's important people who do decide to help with the search remain safe throughout the process.

"Do it in a group and not in your own," Ms Yazdi said, who helped with a public search a few years ago for a missing person.

"When you're searching bushland and creeks, one little mistake and you could be someone they end up having to search for.

"I know there are dangers with people just going out there by themselves. The SES give you techniques to use.

"When you're searching with the SES, one of the techniques they teach is you is that you're not just looking at the ground level, you're looking up as well (in trees)."

Ms Yazdi said the Byron community had been very supportive of the missing teen and his family during this time, taking to social media to send their best wishes for the search.

"For an 18-year-old to go missing in Byron for over a week, everyone has to be a little concerned," she said.

"Under those circumstances, I can see why everyone is worried."

The official police-led search is continuing this morning.

 

Original story: CONCERNED residents, friends and emergency service workers will today continue the search for a missing Belgian backpacker.

Theo Hayez, 18, was reported missing on Thursday.

He was last seen leaving Byron Bay's Cheeky Monkey's bar alone on May 31 about 11pm, wearing a black hooded jumper, beige pants and black shoes.

Much of the community-based search effort is being organised through the Byron Bay Community Board Facebook page, with people posting calls for volunteers to come and help. 

Concerns for Theo's welfare are growing, with one local writing that it had been 'far too long' since he went missing. 

A large-scale search was conducted over the weekend.

It was reported that an SES worker found a jacket similar to one Theo was wearing.

Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report crime via NSW Police social media pages.



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