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National Guard, outside agencies no longer assisting with search for Kyle Doan

Kyle Doan search.jpg
Posted at 12:35 PM, Jan 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-13 22:46:14-05

The National Guard is no longer assisting with the search for Kyle Doan, who was swept away near San Miguel earlier this week.

The search for the 5-year-old began Monday morning. He and his mom were driving to school at Lillian Larsen Elementary in San Miguel when their vehicle was overtaken by floodwaters at the San Marcos East crossing.

Bystanders using a rope were reportedly able to help his mother but they were unable to get a rope to Kyle in time.

The search is taking place in what the sheriff’s office describes as “extremely challenging conditions.”

Photos from the scene show teams wading through thick mud and other debris for any signs of the boy. Many volunteers have also been out looking.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office says the next search location is just north of where Friday's efforts were focused - where the San Marcos Creek and Salinas River meet in San Miguel.

Item's from the car Kyle was in prior to being swept away were found as far out as the Salinas River. The sheriff's office says he could potentially be anywhere from there to Monterey Bay. Complicating search efforts further, the Monterey area is expecting heavy rain throughout the next few days, impacting water levels and making the search even more difficult.

“So today’s search operations are still ongoing. We focused on an area primarily near the confluence of San Marcos Creek and the Salinas River targeting specific areas that we had identified yesterday. We also rechecked certain areas of the creek where the water levels have changed since we’d been there for our comprehensive search yesterday. At this point we have not discovered any additional evidence or anything that helps us find Kyle," Nate Paul, a chief deputy with the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office said on Friday.

The sheriff's office also said the National Guard and other outside agencies were no longer assisting. They were called off due to more rain on the way and because the sheriff's office felt it could handle Friday's search efforts without the additional help. Other agencies could be requested again in the future.

With rain on the way, the sheriff's office says future searches will be limited and done when weather permits.

The sheriff's office is asking the public to refrain from assisting with this search. While they appreciate the community wanting to help, they say it actually makes the search more difficult as they are carefully monitoring water levels and creek conditions. They say when the public self initiates a search, it actually takes away from their ability to keep track of those conditions.

Thursday night, around 100 people came out for a candlelight vigil for Kyle and his family.