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Gaia Pope's family releases search guide

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image copyrightPA
image captionGaia Pope's body was found 11 days after she went missing in Swanage, Dorset, in November 2017

The bereaved family of a teenager who went missing and was later found dead on the Dorset coast has written a search guide in the hope it will help others.

Gaia Pope, 19, went missing from Swanage on 7 November 2017 and her family launched a massive volunteer effort alongside police and search teams to find her.

Her body was found 11 days later.

The family said the guide gives "step-by-step guidance" on search efforts.

Gaia's twin sister Maya Pope-Sutherland, said: "When someone you love disappears it's hard to even think straight. We want to offer the guide so families know what to do."

image copyrightMatt Cardy/Getty Images
image captionMass searches for the teenager were carried out on land surrounding the coast path on the Purbeck coast

Gaia's Guide, which has been backed by Missing People, details how to organise a community search and deal with the press and police.

Remi Arnold, from the charity, said: "It's heart-warming to see something good come from such a tragic event. There is something very powerful about family members using their own experiences to help and support others."

Gaia's family believes she died due to failings by police and mental health services following a rape allegation.

image copyrightPA
image captionScores of people brought flowers and candles to a vigil at Swanage amphitheatre after Gaia's body was found

Her body was found near the Dorset coastal path close to where items of her clothing had been found two days earlier.

A post-mortem examination concluded she died of hypothermia. An inquest into how she died is due to take place in May.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) has investigated both the handling of the search for Gaia and the rape allegation. The findings for both have not yet been released.

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