It has been a little over two weeks since 5-year-old Frank Young disappeared from his home on the Red Earth Cree Nation and the RCMP is not prepared to end the search efforts until they have “exhausted every investigative opportunity.”
Insp. Murray Chamberlin, acting officer in charge of the Saskatchewan RCMP North District Management Team, provided an update on the search for the missing boy Wednesday morning. Both Chief Fabian Head of Red Earth and Chief Marcel Head of nearby Shoal Lake Cree Nation were unable to attend the media conference due to other obligations.
Using GPS technology and a map of the community, police have been tracking and recording areas that have been covered by search crews. This will allow the RCMP to make informed decisions about where to look for Young in the days to come. Search areas are chosen based on the probability of how far a 5-year-old could travel, according to police.
Crews are now focused on water-based searches, as the annual spring-run off from the river has caused flooding in the community and made ground searches increasingly difficult. Muskeg areas in the North end of the community are becoming too wet to search on foot or by All-Terrain Vehicles due to the weekend’s warm weather melting the snowpack.
Over the next few days, RCMP, search and rescue teams, and individual volunteers will use boats and other methods to search the Carrot River for any signs of Frank.
One day after Young’s disappearance, a missing vulnerable person advisory alert was issued on the SaskAlert website. The alert has since been canceled, even though the boy has not been found. Chamberlin said that although he was not involved in the decision, he believes it was “based on the likelihood that having that information disseminated to the public wouldn’t be of value at this time.”
Police are continuing to encourage the public to share any information regarding Frank Young’s whereabouts with the Carrot River RCMP immediately. This includes finding items of interest, such as clothing that seems out of place.
“We would like to thank everyone who has shared information with us or who has shared Frank’s picture and description. We thank the Red Earth Cree Nation leadership and the many individuals and groups who are actively searching for him,” said Insp. Chamberlin. “We remain committed to locating Frank.”