Samantha Murphy missing: Husband pictured smiling outside police station

The husband of a missing mother of three, Samantha Murphy, was spotted talking to police officers on Friday morning.

Ms Murphy, 51, left her home on Eureka Street in East Ballarat, north-west of Melbourne, to go jogging in Woowookarung Regional Park just after 7am on Sunday.

No trace of the mother-of-three has since been found, and it is understood homicide detectives have been called in to help the search as it enters its sixth day.

Mr Murray was all smiles after meeting with detectives at Buninyong Police Station on Friday.

Michael Murphy, the husband of missing mother Samantha Murphy, is pictured leaving Buninyong Police Station

Michael Murphy, the husband of missing mother Samantha Murphy, is pictured leaving Buninyong Police Station

He spent just an hour inside the compound before leaving with an officer escorting him to his car

He spent just an hour inside the compound before leaving with an officer escorting him to his car

He spent just an hour inside the compound before leaving with an officer, who escorted him to his car.

Mr Murray happened to appear as a waiting media pack bombarded him with photographs.

The station is being used by emergency services units as a base camp for its ongoing search for Ms Murphy.

A major challenge facing the police in the search is that there is no CCTV in the large forest area from which she disappeared.

Victoria Police Inspector Bob Heaney said detectives were relying on information from the public to help trace Ms Murphy’s whereabouts.

Samantha Murphy (51) left her home on Eureka Street in East Ballarat, north-west of Melbourne, to go jogging in Woowookarung Regional Park just after 7am on Sunday.

Samantha Murphy (51) left her home on Eureka Street in East Ballarat, north-west of Melbourne, to go jogging in Woowookarung Regional Park just after 7am on Sunday.

“You know, one of the challenges we have is the area where she normally runs, it’s a pretty remote area,” he told Sunrise on Friday morning.

‘It’s inside a forest and a lot of bushland and there’s no CCTV coverage out there. That was one of the challenges we had to face.’

One line of inquiry was officially ruled out on Thursday after police confirmed a woman pictured on CCTV was not Ms Murphy, as previously said.

On Wednesday, Victoria Police released CCTV footage showing a person heading in a north-easterly direction towards Yankee Flat Road, near the intersection of Warrenheip Road.

The woman is believed to be Ms Murphy who was heading for a 20km run through the state forest.

Police and SES are seen combing the Woowookarang National Park

Police and SES are seen combing the Woowookarang National Park

However, another runner has come forward to reveal she is the person in the photo.

Inspector Heaney said the discovery had ‘ruled out’ a possible route Ms Murphy may have taken after leaving the house.

He added that police are still treating her disappearance as not suspicious, despite homicide detectives from the missing persons group reportedly joining the search on Friday.

“Other than covering a lot of ground, a lot of territory that we’ve physically searched looking for Samantha, we don’t know a lot more,” he said.

‘A lot of the information has come in (from the public) that we have to filter through which then allows us to review it and focus on where to look next.’

The search for Ms Murphy has now entered its sixth day

The search for Ms Murphy has now entered its sixth day

CCTV of a woman believed to be Ms Murphy was later found to be another resident in the area

CCTV of a woman believed to be Ms Murphy was later found to be another resident in the area

Inspector Heaney confirmed that Ms Murphy was wearing an Apple watch and had her phone with her when she disappeared, but said the area police could trace on her devices was ‘limited’.

Her cell phone beeped in the nearby Buninyong neighborhood and inquiries continue as to whether the phone is still on.

In another setback on Wednesday, officers were warned about ‘items’ possibly related to Ms Murphy’s disappearance, but it was later determined they did not belong to the missing mother.

Local residents in the area also expressed concern that the mother may have fallen into an abandoned mine shaft, which can be difficult to see on the forest floor.

Earlier on Thursday, Ms Murphy’s eldest daughter Jessica and husband Michael made a desperate plea for their loved one to return home.

Through tears, Jessica urged the public to keep searching for her mother.

“Mom, we love you so much and we miss you and we need you home with us, please come home soon, I can’t wait to see you,” Jessica told reporters.

“Mom is a very strong woman, and she is far too determined to give up this fight.”

Jessica’s father thanked the community for their support in recent days as he appealed for answers.

“People just don’t disappear into thin air,” Mr Murphy said.

‘Someone has to know something… whether it’s any little thing that you might think is relevant, just call the police, let them know.

“It will give us some peace of mind if we get some hope.”

Earlier on Thursday, Ms Murphy's eldest daughter Jessica and husband Michael made a desperate plea for their loved one to return home

Earlier on Thursday, Ms Murphy’s eldest daughter Jessica and husband Michael made a desperate plea for their loved one to return home