Shaun Ritchie: Mum facing eight charges of wasting police time

The mother of a north-east man who has been missing for more than two years has been charged with wasting the time of the officers who were trying to find her son.

Prosecutors allege Shaun Ritchie’s mum, Carol Roy, sent a number of menacing messages to her friends and family pretending to be someone else following his disappearance on Halloween 2014.

And they claim she also lied about being sexually assaulted.

Court papers further state that Roy made false accusations to two officers alleging she had been the subject of abusive letters and calls.

The case against the 39-year-old called at Peterhead Sheriff Court yesterday where it emerged Roy, of Fraserburgh’s Dennyduff Road, was facing a total of eight charges stretching back to June 2015.

Court papers state as a result of Roy’s actions she “temporarily deprived the public” of vital police resources while officers investigated the false threats.

Seven of the charges all date back to a week in mid-August last year when it is alleged Roy’s sister, brother and two friends received text messages threatening violence against her.

However, prosecutors claim Roy had sent the messages herself.

The case was continued without plea yesterday when it called before Sheriff Andrew Miller in order for Mr Ritchie’s mum to seek legal advice.

She is expected to appear in court next month.

Mr Ritchie disappeared in woodlands near Strichen after a Halloween night out with friends more than two years ago.

His mum has always maintained “foul play” was the reason for his disappearance and has repeatedly called on the police to investigate if her son was murdered.

Shaun was 20 when he vanished in the Greenburn area between Strichen and Fraserburgh. Despite one of the largest searches in the history of Police Scotland he remains missing, presumed dead.

Forensic and medical experts, who spent hundreds of hours examining the terrain near a farmhouse where he was last seen, believe he may have become disorientated in freezing conditions and stumbled into a bog.

Roy has repeatedly made impassioned public appeals for information about what happened to her eldest child, and told the Press and Journal she struggled to live in Fraserburgh surrounded by “constant reminders” of her son.

But despite her “mother’s instincts” that Shaun was killed or even murdered, detectives leading the investigation into his disappearance are adamant no evidence of criminality has ever been found.