Child reported missing near Coon Creek Cove found hiding under a camper

May 21, 2023 | Featured|Headlines|Police

COON CREEK — Authorities located an 11-year-old safe after a six-hour search that covered both land and water near Coon Creek Cove Saturday evening.

According to the Kay County Sheriff’s radio log, KSO was notified of a missing nine-year-old at 7:30 p.m. The child was later identified as 11-year-old Dillon Cogburn.

The caller told authorities that the boy had been missing for about 90 minutes and that the child was upset with his parents and wandered off. The Emergency Response Team was notified and activated.

At 8 p.m. Osage County advised they had park rangers searching the area. At about the same time deputies learned that the child was autistic.

Kay County deputies launched a boat, drones and utilized the ATV.

The parents reportedly told authorities that there was an Apple Air Tag on the child but that they were unable to track it. They told authorities that he likes 4-wheelers, likes to hide and that bright lights are a trigger. They also reported that he doesn’t respond well to loud nosies, doesn’t swim.

Deputies were advised that his last known location was south of the Guard Shack, walking south.

At 8:32 p.m. deputies launched the boat and placed ambulances on stand by. The assistance of an Oklahoma Highway Patrol boat was requested. A deputy searched the area of Rocky Ridge Road on ATV.

Newkirk Fire was requested to respond with a handheld flare. They responded and brought nine cameras. They staged at the area of Tower and Rocky Ridge Road.

At 9:04 p.m. a resident told authorities that he has a camper in the area that is unlocked and gave authorities permission to search the camper.

At 9:30 p.m. a deputy advised that air boats equipped with night vision were responding from Oklahoma City and Payne County.

OHP was asked to send out an emergency alert at 10:07 p.m. 

Shortly after the alert was sent, a citizen called KSO and reported that he heard a child screaming on the east side of the dam. Three deputies responded to that area but did not locate anyone.

At 11:45 p.m. authorities reported that the child was found safe.

Kay County Sheriff Steve Kelley said today that the child was found hiding under the camper that the citizen called about. “We searched that area around the camper about 30 minutes prior and he wasn’t there,” said Kelley. “We searched it again and found him hiding.”

Kelley said the boy was located about 60 yards from where his parents last saw him. He said the family is not from Kay County and has been camping in the area for a couple weeks.

Kelley said in all about 60 law enforcement officers responded and numerous volunteers.  “We launched four drones and had tracking dogs from Edmond on the way,” said Kelley.

Kelley expressed gratitude to all of the agencies who assisted in the search which are: Kay County Sheriff’s Office, OHP, Oklahoma Game Wardens, Oklahoma Army Corp of Engineers, Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, Ponca City Police Department, Newkirk Fire/ EMS, Kildare Fire, Kay County Emergency Management, Oklahoma State Emergency Management and numerous civilian volunteers.