All clear declared in Richland Creek search

An all-night search Monday along Richland Creek in Waynesville for a possible missing child turned out to be a false alarm.

Waynesville Police got a call around 7:30 p.m. Monday from someone who thought they heard a children’s screams coming from the direction of Richland Creek.

“We did an exhaustive search and even put a swift water rescue boat in the water,” said Waynesville Police Chief Bill Hollingsed. “We went door-to-door to all the houses in the neighborhood to make sure everybody’s children were accounted for. We didn’t find anything. We’ve had no reports of anybody missing.”

The search was called off at 6 a.m. Tuesday. Several agencies assisted in the search, including Haywood Emergency Management, Haywood Rescue Squad, and the Waynesville, Saunooke, Clyde, Center Pigeon and Junaluska fire departments.

Hollingsed said caution is always the best policy and would go to the same lengths each time to ensure a child isn’t in danger. Richland Creek was running full tilt with high and swift waters due to the heavy unrelenting rains in recent days.

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