PORTLAND, Ore. – The National Guard is now assisting in the search for a second grader from Portland's Skyline Elementary School who went missing Friday.
That's according to a press conference held Saturday by the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office. The FBI also has asked to participate in the search, although as of Saturday – according to spokesman and Multnomah Captain Jason Gates – it had yet to do so.
Even so, more than 150 searchers have been scouring this rural part of Northwest Portland. Searchers include several law enforcement agencies and a police helicopter. Authorities have set up a perimeter around the school that only searchers are being allowed to cross.
We know that 7-year-old Kyron Horman did not return home on his school bus as scheduled at 3:30 p.m. Friday, June 4. Family called Skyline Elementary School soon after, and the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office became involved around 4 p.m.
Matt Shelby, spokesman for Portland Public Schools, said Kyron was with his stepmother at a science fair that morning (see photo above). However, Kyron never checked back in with his teacher afterward, Shelby said.
According to a press release distributed by the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, the boy's stepmother walked Kyron through a number of classrooms and last saw him around 8:45 a.m. Friday. The press release reports she last saw him walking down the hallway toward his classroom, at 11536 N.W. Skyline Blvd.
School staff report not seeing him after 8:45 a.m.
Multnomah County deputies called in their Search and Rescue team to begin a search of the area surrounding the school after school hours Friday. As the evening progressed, SearchOne Canine Inc. and Portland Police also joined in the search.
High grasses on the surrounding property are making the search difficult: "If they're not calling out to you," said a spokesman for the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office in the Saturday press conference, "unless you basically step right over them you're going to miss them."
On Friday a decision was made to upgrade the search to a Major Crimes Team investigation. This allows for more resources to be deployed, which included resources from Portland Police Bureau, Gresham Police Department, Fairview Police Department, Oregon State Patrol and the FBI.
Search and rescue resources also expanded to include SearchOne Canine Inc., Mountain Rescue, Yamhill County Canine and additional members of the Multnomah County Search and Rescue team. Members continued their searching throughout the night, encompassing more than 20 miles of road and two square miles. Portland Police Bureau's air unit also was called in.
Saturday morning, around 7 a.m., the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office readied for its second operational period to find Kyron Horman. It ordered more resources which include Search and Rescue resources from Washington County Sheriff's Office, Yamhill County Sheriff's Office, Clark County Washington, Pacific Northwest Search and Rescue and a National Guard helicopter.
Anyone with information regarding Kyron Horman's whereabouts has been asked to call the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office tip line, 1-503-261-2847, or to dial 9-1-1 with emergency information.
Lieutenant Mary Lindstrand, a spokesperson for the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office, said the agency would have searchers out as long as needed.