Influenced by divers Nicola BuleyA report found her family believes a third party was involved in her disappearance.
Underwater search expert Peter Faulding convinced them the mother-of-two had not fallen into the water. wyle river and made policeA review of the investigation concluded that the job was more difficult.
Mr Fortin, the founder of Specialist Group International (SGI), expressed doubts in an interview on February 5 about police claims that Ms Bulli had slipped into the icy water, and was subsequently asked by her family to help find her.
Despite police claims he signed a confidentiality agreement, the review said Mr Fortin continued to engage with the media “to provide his views and opinions on the matter”. Nikolai is missing”.
This included a statement in which he suggested Ms Bulley’s body would not be found in the river, the review said.
The review said: “Lancashire Constabulary assesses that he used his conversations with the family to provide quotes to the media and influence the family to believe that Nicola did not enter the river but that a third party was involved.”
Police initially rejected Mr Fortin’s offer of help, insisting they had all the resources and expertise needed.
But he was invited to assist after Ms Bulley’s family threatened to issue a “negative press release” to the media if his offer of free help was refused, a review revealed.
The report states: “Lancashire Constabulary believed this would undermine public trust and confidence and therefore subsequently agreed to allow the use of SGI to support their search efforts to find Nicola.”
On February 9, Mr Fording allegedly asked a senior police officer and a family member to take a photo with him at the scene.
“It became clear that Mr. Fortin exhibited a number of behaviors and activities that presented challenges to the investigation,” the review stated.
Lancashire Police said Fording’s behavior, as well as his frequent media appearances, exceeded the terms of his agreement with the force.
“Someone was digging in the woodland with a shovel”
“These include an incident on February 8 when he was seen digging with a shovel in woodland next to a river,” the review read.
“This search activity was not approved by the leadership of the Police Search Advisor (PolSA) and Mr Fording did not take any forensic precautions to ensure the safe recovery of forensic evidence. This activity did not fall within the agreed terms of engagement and any forensic Restoration is outside the scope of the agreed terms of engagement.” It should not proceed. “
The report further criticized Mr Fortin for mistakenly informing family members he believed he had found a body in the river.
“As part of this review, Lancashire Constabulary said this had caused unnecessary distress and false alarms.
“Lancashire Constabulary also stated that Mr Fording’s activities resulted in police resources being directed towards his family to rectify the situation.”
In his statement, Fording denied being told he should not speak to the media and blamed Lancashire Police’s poor media strategy for spiraling out of control.
He said: “I was never told or specifically advised not to talk to the media. The failure of the police to control the media put me in a position where I was swarmed.”
He also denied asking to take photos at the scene, insisting it was a “serious distortion of the facts.”
Mr Fortin added: “My team and I pride ourselves on always conducting ourselves with honesty, integrity, dignity and professionalism in all aspects of our work, particularly when assisting police officers and bereaved families.”