Search for missing woman moves to Bangs Falls, N.S.
Laura Lee Robertson, 47, has not been seen since the afternoon of April 14. According to family members, she had been having a disagreement with her fiancé James Leroy Leopold in their apartment the night before.
Her family and friends searched the Liverpool area earlier in the week, with no results. On Friday, they moved 30 kilometres north of Liverpool to the Bangs Falls area.
Leopold moved out of the Liverpool apartment he shares with Robertson after she disappeared and is staying with his grandparents in Bangs Falls. The search group of about 25 people is not looking on the property Leopold is staying on, but is scouring nearby logging roads and the shoreline of the Medway River.
Leopold did not join the searchers.
'It's like she's vanished'
Trudy Freeman, a close friend of the missing woman, organized the search. The group started Friday morning and plans to search until dark. It intends to go out again Saturday.
"It's like she's vanished off the face of the earth and we want to find her," she said. "We're at our wits end."
Freeman said police were doing all they could, but because RCMP did not have a clear location on where to start a search they also did not join the effort.
Friends and family said it's highly unusual that Robertson would leave without her wallet, purse or keys.
"I just pray she comes home safe and sound, because everybody misses her," Freeman said. "We're going to search until we find her. We'll go crazy if we don't."
Liverpool resident Marlene Gaudet said she had heard about the search on Facebook and volunteered to join.
"I'm a home support worker — I know nothing about searching," Gaudet said, questioning why professionals weren't out to lead the effort. "Why isn't somebody out here helping this family? She's a mother, a grandmother and she's a member of our community. It's sad."
The CBC's Paul Palmeter spoke to Leopold at his grandparents' home Friday, but he offered no comment.
CBC News learned Thursday that Leopold had been ordered to stay away from Robertson. The two were apparently living together, but police would not say if they plan to charge Leopold with violating the court order.
Court documents show Leopold is facing a number of criminal charges, including breaking and entering and possession of stolen goods. He has pleaded not guilty and a trial has been scheduled for June.
Leopold also faces charges related to the assault and forcible confinement of another woman. That trial is scheduled for September.
None of the charges have been proven in court.