Authorities halt search for man who jumped into Plymouth river to retrieve dog

NOW: Authorities halt search for man who jumped into Plymouth river to retrieve dog

Updated: 9:27 p.m. on October 4, 2019

PLYMOUTH, Wis. (CBS 58) -- The search has been called off for a missing 63-year-old man in Sheboygan County. 

Police believe Kevan McClintock fell into the Mullet River trying to find his dog.

After searching for him along the river bank and with drones, the flooded river receded enough for the Sheboygan County Dive Team. 

"We got word from the dive team that the river was safe enough for them to enter for swift water rescue," said Plymouth Police Department Deputy Chief Chris Ringel. "We did enter from a point where we suspect the individual, Kevan, may have gone into the river."

Friends and family joined the search, and are holding out hope. 

"He'd do anything for anybody," said John Saladini, friend of Kevan. "And he was always there to train and teach."

The Plymouth Police Department was notified just more than 12 hours after McClintock went missing after midnight Thursday morning. They searched to the end of their jurisdiction on Friday night. 

"After Highway 67, it gets wider, it deepens. It becomes more of a point where you're searching for a needle in a haystack."

The Mullet River connects to the Sheboygan River, which connects to Lake Michigan. 

Chief Ringel says he told the family the search is off, and it's now day-by-day. 

"If he did by some miraculous way make it past the whole area that we searched, we've got a lot of hunters in this area," he said. "Somebody will find him."

The police department wants to make it clear that the river is still moving very fast, and stresses nobody should take it upon themselves to search it for McClintock.


Updated: 4:02 p.m. on October 4, 2019

PLYMOUTH, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Family, friends, and first responders spent the day Friday, October 4 searching for 63-year-old Kevan McClintock of Greenbush. Officials believe McClintock may have fallen or went into the Mullet River after his dog jumped in sometime around 12:30 a.m. Thursday morning, October 3. The dog was found safe about a block away, but McClintock is still missing.

“He was a good guy,” John Saladini, a close friend of McClintock’s said. “He’d do a lot of things for people.”

Saladini says he hunted with McClintock and they rode motorcycles together. Friday, Saladini searched the banks of the river for his friend.

“We have no idea that he actually fell in, so we’re searching everywhere,” Saladini said.

Friday morning rescuers searched on-foot and used drones.

“I covered about 10 acres and I flew it two different ways,” Wisconsin State Trooper John Jones said. “I took about 500 pictures on each route.”

Those pictures are entered into a database that can detect a specific color and could lead rescuers to a clue.

Dive teams were also sent in, but after all the recent rain,  the river’s rough conditions made the search a challenge.

“With all the water, our banks our saturated. It’s muddy, it’s slippery, the water is moving rather quickly. It can whisk you away quicker than you may be able to save yourself,” Plymouth Police Deputy Chief Christopher Ringel said.

The entire tight-knit community is holding onto hope that McClintock will be found safely.

“He was quiet, he was pleasant, he was fun, smiley,” Nicole Beyer, Wild Shots Pub owner said. “He liked to hang out, just drink some beers. He’d get a burger, usually every Monday. We’re praying and hoping.”

The Plymouth School District also confirmed that McClintock worked in the district as a custodian for several years. Police said he is also a father and a husband.


Posted: 7:45 p.m. on October 3, 2019 

PLYMOUTH, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Police say a 63-year-old man was reported missing Thursday after jumping in the Mullet River in downtown Plymouth to retrieve his dog. 

The focus of the search is along the river, where the man was last seen around 12:30 p.m. 

Authorities say the dog was later found by a friend. 

The police department requested assistance of the Sheboygan County Sheriff's Drone Team and a helicopter from the Wisconsin National Guard.

They say search teams experienced difficulties due to high water levels and a fast-moving current. 

Efforts were suspended at dusk and will resume Friday morning.

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