Noah Donohoe, 14, went missing in Belfast on June 21. His body was discovered in a storm drain six days later and post-mortem said the teen died by drowning.
Michelle O’Neill, Northern Ireland’s Deputy First Minister and vice president of Sinn Féin, said today that she has met with Fiona Donohoe, mother of Noah Donohoe, and has confirmed that inquest into the teenager's death has been launched.
In a Facebook post on Wednesday, O'Neill said "The death of 14-year-old Noah Donohoe was a tragedy which stunned us all and touched the hearts of everyone.
"Our thoughts go first and foremost to Noah's mother, Fiona, and to all who knew and loved him.
"I have met with Fiona and with her legal team and have told them I will leave no stone unturned to help them find the truth.
"Understandably, people are now looking for answers around the circumstances which surrounded Noah's tragic death. In particular, the role of the PSNI in investigating Noah's disappearance and his death has been questioned by some.
"The Senior Coroner has opened an inquest into Noah’s death, and a hearing date has been set for January 2021.
"I would appeal to anyone with any evidence or information in respect of Noah’s disappearance to bring this immediately to the PSNI, firstname.lastname@example.org, Fiona Donohoe’s Solicitor, Niall Murphy or Relatives for Justice.
"I would also reiterate the family’s plea to the householders in the relevant Shore Road area, to secure any private CCTV from 21st June at around 6pm and bring it to Police, the Coroner or Noah’s representatives.
"I would further appeal for householders to take steps to ensure that any such CCTV does not overwrite itself, as that can be an automated technical setting on CCTV systems.
"All families are entitled to know the truth surrounding the deaths of their loved ones and this must be the case for the family of Noah Donohoe.
"I fully support Fiona and the Donohoe family in their search for the truth about the tragic death of Noah. I will not rest to she has all the answers surrounding the loss of her beautiful boy. Noah's memory deserves nothing less."
*APPEAL FOR INFORMATION ON NOAH DONOHOE* The death of 14 year-old Noah Donohoe was a tragedy which stunned us all and...Publiée par Michelle O'Neill sur Mercredi 12 août 2020
Three days ago, Fiona Donohoe said in a public Facebook post: “My son died … we have no answers … we have NOTHING … please start questioning why I have no answers.” The post has been likely nearly 9 thousand times.
That same day, a petition was launched by “Friends of Fiona Donohoe” on Change.org entitled “Investigation of the PSNI handling of the disappearance and death of Noah Donohoe.” The petition has since garnered more than 22,500 signatures.
The petition reads in part: "There is public huge concern over how a 14 year old boy can leave his home and disappear, only to be found in very strange circumstances. The PSNI are not providing answers to reassure Fiona or indeed the public, many of whom are wondering if it is safe for their children to leave their homes in daylight to meet friends."
Fiona Donohoe endorsed the petition in a public Facebook post the day it was launched:
Noah Donohoe, 14, went missing at about 5:30 pm on Sunday, June 21 when he went cycling across the Belfast City.
He was seen abandoning his clothes and cycling naked around four kilometers from his home some minutes later, leading police to believe that he fell from his bike and hit his head as both his family and the police say that this sort of behavior is "completely out of character."
Police officers found the teenager's backpack and laptop computer in a search on June 26.
PSNI Superintendent Muir Clark said: "In my 30 years in the police, this is one of the most unusual missing person inquiries that I have dealt with."
On June 27, the PSNI said in a statement that they located a body in North Belfast believed to be that of Noah Donohoe’s.
A post-mortem later said that Donohoe died as a result of drowning, a result which Andree Murphy, a spokesperson for the Donohoe family and member of Relatives for Justice, said "raises more questions than answers."