Police find missing man after clue left on Christmas card leads to new address

A 67-year-old missing man was finally tracked down after police found a hidden clue lurking on the back of a Christmas card.

Hopes of finding the man were fading until the officers stumbled across the discovery, which was indented on the festive card.

After carrying out "extensive enquiries," Durham Constabulary said they reckoned the bloke had headed towards Northumberland.

But they "hit a wall" when they couldn't pin him down to a specific location and he didn't have a mobile phone with him, ChronicleLive reports.

Running out of ideas, PCs Bruno Lee and Martin Coates went back to the bloke's house and rummaged through his post to make sure they'd left no stone unturned – and eventually they struck gold.

Coates is said to have found a Christmas card with an indentation on the back. When he held it up to the light, there was a glimmer of hope.

The indent looked like the word "Alnwick" followed by a phone number linked to the same area in the market town in Northumberland.

Cops from Bishop Auckland's D relief team reckon someone had been leaning on the card while writing a note on a piece of paper, which left the helpful clue.

After checking the number, officers pinpointed an address in Alnwick. Eventually, after coming within a whisker of losing hope, they found the bloke safe and well and staying with mates.

Response inspector David Littlefair sang the praises of the quick-thinking coppers.

He said: "When someone is reported missing it is a worrying time for family and friends and officers will do everything they can to reunite people as quickly as possible.

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  • "Because of the officers’ thoroughness, the missing person was quickly spoken to who confirmed he was safe and well, resulting in a positive outcome and bringing the long investigation to a successful close.

    "It’s the kind of thing you see in the movies but it really does show how dedicated our officers are and sometimes you just have to follow your gut instincts – well done Bruno and Martin!"

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