Fury at Lancashire Police's Lego tweet during search for Nicola Bulley

EXCLUSIVE: ‘What an utterly inappropriate response’: Fury at ‘farcical’ Lancashire Police as it emerges force replied to tweet showing lead detective as a Lego figure during search for missing Nicola Bulley

  • Lancashire Police have been criticised over the handling of the missing case
  • More fury was vented today after it vowed to show SIO Lego tribute from fan 

Under-fire Lancashire Police said in a tweet how they would show the probe’s senior investigating officer a Lego figure made in her likeness during the search for missing Nicola Bulley.

Less than two days after Det Supt Rebecca Smith had slated social media for ‘distracting the investigation’, force staff admired the toy lookalike of her in a Twitter post.

The minifigure – the name given to the plastic articulated figurines – showed a long haired, black dressed model that certainly resembled the senior officer.

And after the item’s creator praised the force for its hard work during the three-week search for Ms Bulley, it was asked if it would show her the toy.

In a reply sure to raise further questions over police judgement, staff responded ‘We’ll make sure she sees this’.

There was no response to MailOnline this afternoon on how and when Det Supt Smith was shown the Lego figure.

The exchange on Twitter prompted criticism from force followers during the missing probe

Lancashire Police have been criticised over the handling of Ms Bulley’s missing person case

But there were some strident opinions from force followers on the brief exchange.

One asked: ‘Why don’t you focus on conducting yourselves with dignity and integrity instead of engaging with tweets and liking pro Lancashire police tweets.

‘You’re turning this case into a farce, now you’re engaging with irrelevant tit for tat online, publicly, it’s disgusting.’

Another opined: ‘Utterly inappropriate response. Just mind numbingly irrelevant.’

The figure was was made by popular Twitter account Brick Cop, who is an anonymous real-life officer who makes the toys in their spare time.

Lancashire Police has come under criticism for the way it has handled the disappearance of Ms Bulley on January 27.

Then during a press conference featuring Senior Investigating Officer Det Supt Rebecca Smith on February 15 police mentioned for the first time Ms Bulley had some ‘specific vulnerabilities’

Police officers walk past flowers and yellow ribbons tied to a bridge for Nicola Bulley over the River Wyre in St Michael’s on Wyre, this morning

The force gave no hint she may have been vulnerable when they posted an appeal for witnesses.

Read more: Body is found by police in hunt for missing Nicola Bulley following tip-off from walkers

Instead, experts said, it portrayed her as an ‘everymum’ with no problems or reason to go missing.

On February 3 it suggested she was not unwell and not being treated for any illness or taking any medication.

Then on February 15 it mentioned for the first time Ms Bulley had some ‘specific vulnerabilities’.

Hours later it went even further and in an extraordinary briefing, disclosed she had ‘significant issues with alcohol brought on by ongoing struggles with menopause’.

And on February 16, just after 2.06pm, it released a statement from the family.

It read: ‘It has now been three weeks since Nikki went missing. We, as a family, believe that the public focus has become distracted from finding Nikki, and more about speculation and rumours into her and Paul’s private life.

‘As a family, we were aware beforehand that Lancashire Police, last night, released a statement with some personal details about our Nikki.

A red rose, daffodils and a yellow ribbon with a message adorn a footbridge over the River Wyre in St Michael’s on Wyre today

‘Although we know that Nikki would not have wanted this, there are people out there speculating and threatening to sell stories about her. This is appalling and needs to stop.

‘The police know the truth about Nikki and now the public need to focus on finding her.

‘Due to the peri menopause Nikki suffered with significant side effects such as brain fog, restless sleep and was taking HRT to help but this was giving her intense headaches which caused Nikki to stop taking the HRT thinking that may have helped her but only ended up causing this crisis.’

Two dogwalkers yesterday alerted to police to the River Wyre after spotting something in the water.

Officers rushed to the scene and said they had sadly recovered a body.

It has not been identified but Ms Bulley’s family have been kept informed. 

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