Hundreds join search for Xavior Harrelson Sunday

·2 min read

May 30—MONTEZUMA — Hundreds of public volunteers showed up Sunday to assist law enforcement in the search for a 10-year-old missing boy.

On Sunday morning, volunteers from around central Iowa joined law enforcement that included local agencies, officers from neighboring counties, the Iowa Department of Public Safety, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Officials estimate at least 300 volunteers from the public showed up Sunday to aid in the efforts, which included more than 150 members of law enforcement.

The search for Xavior Harrelson, 10, began on Thursday when he was reported missing by his family. He hasn't been seen since he left his home that morning, law enforcement said, adding that due to his age he is considered endangered.

By Friday, the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation joined the case. The investigation now includes federal resources, law enforcement confirmed Sunday.

The search area has expanded from a half-mile from Harrelson's home to a one-mile radius on Sunday. Law enforcement spent the first three days of their investigation searching areas around town as well as Diamond Lake Park.

Investigators have located "nothing of value" so far in their search efforts which led them to expand the search area, said Mitch Mortvedt, the assistant director of the Iowa DCI.

"We're going to systematically search in a grid pattern with all of these volunteers," Mortvedt said.

Law enforcement delayed involving the public in the search because the terrain in their initial area of interest was deemed unsafe for volunteers, Mortvedt said.

As of Sunday, law enforcement is still considering Harrelson's disappearance a missing child case. Mortvedt said they don't have enough information to issue an Amber Alert, which is reserved for child abductions when there's enough information to assist in the recovery of the child.

Law enforcement continues to ask the public to call the Poweshiek County Sheriff's Office with any information about Harrelson's disappearance at 641-623-2107.

"If anybody has any information, even if they may think it's irrelevant, let us be the judge of that," Mortvedt said.

Mortvedt said law enforcement is limited on the information it can release, but he told media on Sunday that law enforcement don't have "solid information" whether Harrelson left his home on a bike. He said there are not currently any persons of interest in the disappearance.

At the time of his last sighting, he was wearing a red T-shirt, blue pajama pants and black high-top shoes. Harrelson is described as 4-foot-8, 100 pounds, white male with brown hair and blue eyes.

Kyle Ocker is the editor of the Oskaloosa Herald and the Ottumwa Courier. He can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @Kyle_Ocker.

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