GOLDSBORO, N.C. (WNCN) – Additional search teams were brought in Thursday to help locate a father and his 5-year-old son who went missing in the Neuse River on Wednesday night.

Boat crews suspended their search at 8:15 p.m. Thursday. They will deploy again Friday morning after sunrise, spokesperson Joel Gillie said. Land-based crews will continue looking for the two overnight.

Crews were searching in and around the Neuse River in Goldsboro for the pair after a 911 caller reported seeing a child slip into the water on Wednesday.

Around 8 p.m. Wednesday, a call came in from someone who said they saw a father and son fishing off of a dock at the Goldsboro Boating Access Area off of U.S. 117.

The caller said they saw the child slip in and the father jump in after him.

“We were finishing and fixing to load our boat up and we were standing there talking to them, and the 5-year-old fell off the dock and his daddy told him to grab the net. And because the current goes to the left, the current pushed the baby away,” the caller explained on the phone with 911.

A boat on the river stopped to help but couldn’t locate either of them.

Gillie said Thursday evening that it is still a search effort – not a recovery.

Dive teams continued to search until the sun went down Thursday.

“Our air watch team is luckily providing us some support further down river,” Gillie said. “They can cover more ground quicker, so they are looking down river, but this is still the main area we are searching in.”

Among the agencies aiding in the search were Goldsboro Fire Department, the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office dive team, the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office, and Wayne County EMS, the Rosewood Fire Department, and the Grahtham Fire Department.

The river banks and surrounding land area were searched Wednesday night.



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As of 8:40 a.m. Thursday, nearly 10 boats were at the river and two had already been put in the water. The water in the area where the search is currently being conducted is measuring 10 feet deep, officials said.

Officials also confirmed on Thursday morning that a 7-year-old was with the pair when they went fishing.

The 7-year-old child did not get in the water and is not missing.