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Body found in missing woman case

Published: 6:13AM Friday November 23, 2012 Source: ONE News

Police investigating the disappearance of Rotorua woman Michelle Hoffman-Tamm say they have found a body, but have not yet confirmed its identity.

Hoffman-Tamm, 51, has been missing for more than two weeks. She was last seen on her bike leaving home in Phillip Street, Rotorua, on the way to visit friends.

Police said they found a body at 2.30pm at a rural location next to State Highway 38, about 10km from Murupara. Police had been at the scene since yesterday when 'significant developments' had led them to cordon off the area.

"We have formal identification processes to now go through and it would be wrong of me to speculate before those processes are complete,"  Detective Senior Zane Smith said.

"We have been continually updating Michelle's family on the progress of our investigation and of course we have advised them that we have located a body, but they too understand that we cannot jump to conclusions."

The body has been removed from the scene while forensic work continues at the site. Police are also continuing their investigations of a house on Holland Street.

Hoffman-Tamm's red bike was located yesterday by some shops at the intersection of Te Ngae Road and Basley Road in Rotorua.

Hoffman-Tamm's family are being kept up to date with developments.

Her sister Jan Dolan said it was completely out of character for her sister to go missing and not make contact with her family.

She said that Hoffman-Tamm was in a "very good head space' when she was last seen.

Meanwhile, a 44-year-old woman has appeared in the Rotorua District Court charged with assaulting Hoffman-Tamm.

Police say further charges are likely to be laid against the arrested woman.
           
She has been remanded in custody until next month and her name has been been suppressed in the meantime.

Police want to hear from anyone who was in the area of Holland Street between 6pm on Wednesday November 7, and Sunday November 11, and in Victoria Street between Sunday November 11 and Monday November 12.

Police are particularly interested in the movements of a two-tone light-coloured Subaru Legacy stationwagon between the 7th and the 12th travelling around Rotorua or between Rotorua, Whakatane and Murupara.

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