NORTH PLAINS, Ore. — The active search and rescue operations for missing 20-year-old Allyson Watterson has been suspended, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office said. She was last seen on Sunday morning, Dec. 22.
“Allyson, I will never stop looking for you,” her mother, Misty said on Saturday evening. “I would like to ask everyone else not to stop looking either. She is a very special girl and she deserves to be looked for.”
Hundreds of searchers have scoured 1,600 acres of rural land in North Plains for any sign of Watterson over the last five days. She was reported missing on Monday, Dec. 23.
Deputy Tony Morris with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office said after days of searching and not locating Watterson the decision was made to suspend the active search in that area.
On Saturday, Dec. 28, between 75-100 trained searchers were out in North Plains for much of the day. Deputies “chased down some other things that were concerning for us,” Morris said.
Even though an active search has been called off, the investigation into her disappearance continues, said Detective Mark Povolny. He said if Washington County Sheriff's Office receives any new information where it is necessary for search and rescue to come back out, they will.
Watterson was last seen shortly before noon on Sunday, Dec. 22. Detective Povolny said a homeowner reported seeing Watterson with her boyfriend in an area north of North Plains. That area has been the focus of searches throughout week.
Watterson was not reported missing until Monday evening Dec. 23. Investigators are still trying to learn what happened in that 30-hour gap.
“That delay is concerning to us and we’re trying to put together what happened," Povolony said on Friday.
Watterson was reported missing by her boyfriend's father. He told deputies he believed his son, Benjamin Hunter Garland, and Watterson were hiking in the area when they got separated. Detective Povolny said investigators do not believe the couple was hiking.
After receiving the report on Dec. 23 that Watterson was missing, deputies went looking for her in North Plains. That night, deputies found a pickup truck that was later determined to be stolen.
A short time later, deputies found Garland in the same area. They took him into custody on unrelated charges and warrants, in addition to charges connected with the stolen truck.
According to officials, Garland gave information that has been helpful to the search.
Povolny did not label Garland as a suspect or person of interest in the case.
If you have any information about this case, contact the Washington County Sheriff's Office at 503-846-2700.