Search Continues for Jefferson City Teen

6 years 6 months 2 weeks ago May 19, 2010 May 19, 2010 Wednesday, May 19 2010 Wednesday, May 19, 2010 1:39:04 PM CDT in News

Rescuers are still searching for 16-year-old Robert Nichols after he jumped into the Missouri River on Friday.

The Missouri River is above flood levels making it hard for the Missouri Water Patrol to continue its search. The river is flowing 30-40 miles per hour, forcing the water patrol to take the the skies. It joined with the Missouri Highway Patrol to use its helicopters during the search.

"The problem really that [the water level] creates is that as the river falls, the wing dikes will be exposed and our worry is if the victim surfaces and ends up behind one of those, it will make the searches that much harder," Sgt. Jerry Callahan of the Missouri Water Patrol said.

Nichols escaped from the custody of the Department of Youth Services on Friday afternoon. He was wearing ankle and wrist constraints when he jumped into the water. No witnesses reported seeing him resurface.

"We've also talked to, coordinated with water patrol units further down around St. Charles to make sure later in the week they're going to be running those sections of river just to make sure we've covered all bases," Callahan said.

Callahan says the river is not receeding as fast as he'd like and he hopes there is no more rain in the near future.

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