January 30 2015 Latest news:
Wednesday, September 26, 2012
Orpington father of Jeremy Forrest speaks out as picture is released of teacher with Megan Stammers on Dover ferry
The Kent father of the teacher who has run off with a 15-year-old schoolgirl has appealed for them to come home.
Police in Sussex say keen musician and maths teacher Jeremy Forrest fled Britain on a cross-channel ferry from Dover with teenage student Megan Stammers.
Forrest, 30, and Megan were snapped by the ship’s CCTV system last Thursday, apparently calmly walking hand-in-hand. They had return tickets for Sunday, but failed to use them.
He teaches at the Bishop Bell Church of England School in Eastbourne, where there is concern education chiefs knew the pair were getting close, but at first apparently did little to halt the relationship.
However, it’s now understood Forrest was about to be suspended.
Now Mr Forrest’s father Jim has joined Megan’s parents in calling for the pair to get in touch and return safely home.
His son married photographer Emily Faulder, 31, in April, but there are reports he was falling for Megan seven months ago during private math tuition sessions.
Friends have said they were worried about the situation after they were allegedly seen February holding hands on a flight back from a Los Angeles school trip.
Speaking at his home in Orpington, Mr Forrest told reporters his son was “a gentle and caring” person who was extremely vulnerable.
He added: “I am worried about Jeremy; I am not worried about Megan. I can tell you my son is one of the most gentle, caring people you will ever meet. I worry for him more than Megan in case he flips.”
Of the ferry picture, Sussex Police Chief Inspector Jason Tingley said: “We are releasing this photo to show Megan and Jeremy’s appearance at the time they travelled to France as we believe it will improve the public’s ability to recognise the pair together.
“Although they entered France, it is possible that they are elsewhere now. Therefore our objectives are to identify where they are and for them to contact us, so we can bring Megan home safely.
“We are working with Interpol, a dedicated liaison officer in France and the French Missing Persons Bureau, as well as other law enforcement agencies in Europe. At this time our foreign liaison is focussed on raising awareness of the pair and gathering information about where they could be. We have the ability to request other support and resources from the European authorities when the need arises.
“On an enquiry like this, there will always be reports of unconfirmed sightings, which we will follow up. We will not comment on speculation about locations, but with public awareness being a key factor in this enquiry, we will publicise confirmed sightings.
“We would like to thank the public and media for their assistance. We are particularly grateful for the efforts of the international media in raising awareness about the pair abroad. Our primary concern is still to find Megan and Jeremy safe and well.”
Megan’s stepmother Tracy Stammers, 41, said she had no idea that her daughter was involved with one of the teachers or that the school was investigating.
She said: “It’s all very, very new to us. We just want her back we want her back safe. All I can say is I hope these things are looked into. We were not aware of anything until it came out in the press. We were quite shocked.”