Frantic search for 2-year-old who fell in Leicester's River Soar continues

The search paused overnight and has continued this morning.

Boy missing River Soar
© Jack Lucas Smith / UNSPLASH
Boy missing River Soar

Yesterday, Britain was hit with the tragic news of a little boy who had fallen into the River Soar in Leicestershire. The two-year-old has been missing since, despite the search efforts of the police who have been scouring the area.

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The family of the little boy is being supported by police, and after a pause overnight when it was too dark to keep looking, the search resumed this morning. Here’s everything we know about what has happened so far, and what the police and locals are saying about the incident.

The boy fell in the water

It is unknown how this came to happen, but the little boy fell into the River Soar on Sunday 18th February. He was with his family, and the incident happened at around 5pm. The toddler, who has not been named, has not been found since. A search operation was launched, and footage posted online showed police and a helicopter scanning the area. The helicopter was replaced by a drone when it had to refuel. However, the police issued a statement at 10:30pm last night that stated the boy had not been found ‘despite the best efforts’ of the search teams.

What police have said

The boy's father was hospitalised ‘as a precautionary measure’. It is believed that he followed his son into the water. Police have issued a warning to those trying to help in the search:

We have had a number of offers of support to assist with the search and would kindly ask that people do not attend the scene due to rising water levels and safety risks.

However, if you have any information regarding the toddler, you should contact 999, quoting incident 476:180224.

Due to the darkness, the search was halted overnight. Resident Vicki Hudson wrote on Facebook:

This is so so sad I could see from my house the amount of specialist services that were searching but it got dark very quickly I couldn’t stop thinking about it all through the night.

What locals have said

Despite the police warning against it, many locals have been seen near the river. There were reports of people heading out to hunt for the toddler with only the light from their phones, and one resident posted on X:

Just went by Middleton Street, people going down to the river with just their phone torches, very silly and reckless.

Another local, Luke Donnachie, felt he couldn’t sit by and do nothing:

Thoughts and prayers going out to the family at this horrendous time, as a parent myself to a 4-year-old I couldn’t think of anything worse hence why I just had to go out and at least have a little search.

He did add that it ‘will be such a long shot now so many hours after’.

The operation continues this morning with ‘additional specialist teams’.

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Sources used:

The Independent: Frantic search in Leicester as toddler with family falls into River Soar and man rushed to hospital – latest


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