March 27, 2009 in City

Sheriff calls off search for toddler

Associated Press
 

The Whitman County sheriff has called off the search for a missing 2-year-old boy. The search, which began Thursday afternoon around 12:30 was called off at 3 p.m. Friday.

Officials say the Avery Blakeley is presumed dead.

Sheriff Brett Myers says a slipper found at Pine Creek matched those the boy was wearing when he disappeared near the town of Malden.

The sheriff says more than 75 searchers looked for the boy Friday, but divers were unable to enter the creek that is murky and running full. Myers said he’ll decide Friday whether to suspend the search until the water subsides.

The boy was last seen about 12:30 p.m. Thursday while his mother and aunt moved items from their trailer home near Pine Creek, about 35 miles south of Spokane in northern Whitman County.

A Spokane County dive team and helicopters helped search-and-rescue crews.

Sheriff’s officials say they found no evidence the boy was abducted, and they believe he wandered from the home.

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