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Search for teens on Farmington River suspended again

By LIBBY MCMANUS, CHRISTIAN COLÓN, COURTNEY ZIELLER, SHARON JOHNSON

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    AVON, Connecticut (WFSB) — Officials confirm that the search for the missing teens in the Farmington River is suspended again.

The operation will be suspended around noon for all agencies.

Crews will resume the rescue tomorrow at 8 a.m.

“We have done as much as we could. Water levels in condition are not safe for responders,” said Major Brian Newman from Connecticut EnCon police. “They are balancing recovery and safety.”

Officials resumed the search for the two missing teens who were last seen swimming in the Farmington River this morning at 8 a.m.

Authorities suspended the search Friday afternoon after cancelling a scheduled news conference for 5:30 p.m.

This was due to the speed of the water increasing and the change in weather.

The two teens were reported missing around 5 p.m. Thursday night. They were last seen swimming in the Farmington River that afternoon.

Crews from Avon, Plainville, Connecticut State Police and the Dept. of Energy and Environmental Protection are all involved in the search, which started on Thursday but was suspended overnight due to the conditions in the river.

The search resumed at 8 a.m. on Friday.

Officials gave an update at 12 p.m., during which they officially called the search a recovery:

“Right now, it’s a search and recovery mission, unfortunately,” confirmed Capt. Keith Williams, CT Dept. of Conservation Police.

As the search continued, the Rails to Trails was closed between Route 4 and Route 179, as well as Arch Road, officials said.

As of Friday morning, officials said they had found a vehicle belonging to one of the teens, as well as clothing and a cell phone. That led search crews up a 3 mile stretch of the river. Some of them were up along Route 179 in Collinsville.

One teen was identified as Anthony Nagore, 17, who has blonde hair and blue eyes. Anthony is about 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighs about 150 pounds.

Officials believe Lucas Brewer, 15, was with him. His picture was not released. They described him as having brown hair, being about 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighing 170 pounds.

Lucas was last seen wearing a white t-shirt with pink and white camo pants.

Brewer is a student at Plainville High School, the Plainville superintendent’s office confirmed.

Superintendent Steve LePage released a statement on Friday afternoon.

As you may have seen on the news this morning, two teenage students went missing after it was believed they went swimming in the Farmington River on Thursday. One of these students is from Plainville and attends Plainville High School. The other student is not from Plainville, but was visiting family in Plainville. The Avon Police Department’s search for these students continues, and we will remain hopeful for their safe return. I am in regular contact with our Plainville Police Department leadership, who is collaborating with Avon on this search effort.

The river was said to be very dangerous for swimming because it has been high from all the recent rain.

On Friday afternoon, environmental officials said the river current remained very strong.

“If you’re looking at the river right now, you see parts of it calm, but the current is ripping through there,” Williams explained. “It’s very strong and very deceiving.”

Williams has contacted the Army Corps of Engineers to try to drop the water level.

If anyone has information on the two teens that might help, call the Plainville Police Department at 860-747-1616.

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