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Man charged with murder of mum-of-three Samantha Murphy who went missing after going for a morning run

Man charged with murder of mum-of-three Samantha Murphy who went missing after going for a morning run

The investigation continues

A man has been charged with the murder of mum-of-three, Samantha Murphy, who went missing after going for a morning run.

The 51-year-old was last seen on 4 February before she left her house for a run in Ballarat, Victoria.

The mum's disappearance has since sparked a month-long search.

Surveillance footage captured on the morning she vanished showed Samantha wearing a maroon top and black leggings outside her home.

Samantha Murphy was last seen about a month ago (4 February) before she left her house for a run.
9 News Australia

Then, around half an hour into her run, her phone data showed she had reached the Mount Clear area which is around 7km from her house.

Both Samantha's phone and Apple watch, which she was carrying at the time of her disappearance, have also yet to be located.

Speaking yesterday (6 March), Victoria police announced they had arrested a 22-year-old man.

They did not provide any additional details other than that he appeared in the Ballarat Magistrates Court on Thursday afternoon.

Shane Patton, police chief commissioner, said the cause of Samantha's death was an alleged 'deliberate attack'.

He added: "I’m not going to go into the details, motive or any of those further details in regards to what has or hasn’t happened when she has [allegedly] been killed.

"I will simply say he has been charged with murder, which by its definition means it was an intentional act."

Patton did, however, note that the suspect was not known to Samantha's family and that, so far, he had not disclosed the location of her body.

He also thanked police for their 'painstaking, methodical investigation'.

"Samantha’s disappearance had a profound impact on the Ballarat community," Patton added. "Some cases, some disappearances, some murders, bring out outpourings of grief and we have seen that here."

Family Handout

The chief commissioner announced their work was 'far from over' and that authorities would continue to 'gather further evidence' and continue the investigation at 'a very heavy pace'.

Samatha's husband, Michael Murphy, told reporters of his relief after learning about the suspect's arrest.

"It’s like someone’s let the pressure valve off sort of thing. It hasn’t been a good nearly five weeks," Mr Murphy said.

Their eldest daughter described her mum as a 'really strong woman' who was 'far too determined to give up this fight'.

"Mum, we love you so much, and we miss you. We need you at home with us. Please come home soon. I can't wait to see you and to give you the biggest hug when I do," she said.

Featured Image Credit: Victoria Police/Nine news

Topics: Crime, News, Australia