Police in the UK have confirmed the body found less than a mile from where Nicola Bulley vanished is the missing mum.
In a press conference on Monday evening UK time, cops shared the tragic update that the remains found yesterday were Nicola’s.
The mum-of-two, 45, was last seen in St Michael’s on Wyre, in Lancashire in the north of England, at around 9.15am on January 27.
Her disappearance sparked a mystery after her mobile was found on a bench still connected to a work conference call.
Nicola’s pet springer spaniel Willow was also found – but there was no trace still of the mother-of-two.
Police searching for Nicola on Sunday confirmed a body had been found less than a mile from where she was last seen more than three weeks ago.
However, they needed formal identification to take place before they could confirm the remains were Nicola’s.
That process has now been completed, with officers confirming the body belongs to the mum-of-two in a in a press conference at 5.30pm on Monday, UK time.
Nicola’s family released a devastating statement after her death was confirmed.
“Finally, Nikki, you are no longer a missing person, you have been found,” it said.
“We can let you rest now.”
The family said police confirmed their “worst fears” when they revealed the body belonged to Nicola.
“We will never be able to comprehend what Nikki had gone through in her last moments and that will never leave us,” they said.
“We will never forget Nikki, how could we, she was the centre of our world, she was the one who made our lives so special and nothing will cast a shadow over that.
“Our girls will get the support they need from the people who love them the most.”
A police statement released yesterday said Nicola’s death is being treated as unexplained.
Officers closed off an area less than a mile from where Nicola was last seen after a tip-off from two dog walkers.
Divers were seen entering the water after two police cars were raced to the scene yesterday morning.
The search area spanned along Rawcliffe Road as well as nearby footpaths.
A police helicopter circled above as a man and woman were seen pointing to the spot where a new search was launched.
The horrified witness’ first words to the cops were revealed.
The man, who appeared pale, could be seen pointing to the area along the bank.
He can then be heard saying: “It was a body. It is down there.
“It was a body of a woman. There is definitely a body down there.”
The tragic discovery comes after police confirmed Nicola was treated as a high-risk missing person when she disappeared.
The force revealed Nicola had “vulnerabilities” at the time she went missing they were made aware of by partner Paul Ansell and her family.
These included “significant issues with alcohol” in the past that were brought on by her “ongoing struggles with the menopause”.
Nicola’s struggles had resurfaced over recent months, police confirmed.
A statement added: “This caused some real challenges for Paul and the family.
“As a result of those issues, a response car staffed by both police and health professionals attended a report of concern for welfare at Nicola’s home address on January 10th.
“No one has been arrested in relation to this incident, but it is being investigated.”
This story was originally published by The Sun and was reproduced with permission