UPDATE, 12:10 p.m.: Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office update:
At 9:20 this morning, the Sheriff’s Office received a report of a deceased person in the area of Hiller Road and Ocean Drive, McKinleyville. The Coast Guard helicopter retrieved the body and brought it to the Mad River Boat Ramp. The deceased person was positively identified by the Humboldt County Sheriff Coroner’s Division as missing person Lester Abbey.
Lester Abbey’s family has been notified. An autopsy will be performed to determine cause of death.
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UPDATE, 11:38 a.m.: Patrick Abbey of McKinleyville called the Outpost to let us know that the body found by search teams this morning was in fact Lester Abbey. The body was found in the water entangled in some vegetation near the mouth of the Mad River. We will update this post when we hear more.
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Original Post: Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office press release:
On Tuesday, June 28, 2016, at about 9 p.m. Humboldt County Deputy Sheriffs responded to the 2600 block of Knox Cove Drive, McKinleyville, CA for a missing person report. Upon arrival, the Deputies spoke with the reporting party. The reporting party told the Deputies his brother, 63 year old Lester Abbey is visiting from New Zealand and went for a jog on the beach at about 4:30 p.m. that evening. The reporting party believed Abbey planned to head to the beach via the Hammond Trail to the Mad River area and then would then run back to the residence north along the beach. Abbey left the residence with “only the clothes on his back,” and has no friends or other relatives in the area. Abbey had no supplies, but is stated to be in good physical shape and family believes him to be capable of sustaining himself overnight if nothing catastrophic happened.
Deputies checked the area of the Hammond Trail to the Mad River Beach area as well as some beach areas north of that location. The US Coast Guard helicopter also flew the area, but was unable to locate any signs of Abbey.
Deputies along with a US Coast Guard helicopter are continuing the search for Abbey today, June 29th.
Anyone with information for the Sheriff’s Office regarding this case or related criminal activity is encouraged to call the Sheriff’s Office at 707-445-7251 or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at 707-268-2539.