FARGO — Fargo police said Wednesday, Oct. 7, that the search remains ongoing for Robert McKinnon, 80, whose whereabouts remain unknown since he left a south Fargo memory care center about a week ago.
McKinnon was last seen about 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 1, in the 4500 block of 36th Avenue South in southwestern Fargo.
A thorough ground search was conducted within a 4-square mile area around the care facility where McKinnon resides and police have rechecked certain areas since that initial search was conducted.
"We’ve continued our search over the past few days to include drone searches, some helicopter flyovers and additional ground searching. Our detectives are also going through surveillance footage of area businesses," said Jessica Schindeldecker, public information officer for the Fargo Police Department.
Bridget Weidner, director of the division of health facilities for the North Dakota Department of Health, said state health officials have been in contact with the memory care facility where McKinnon resides to make sure no other residents are at risk.
"They (facility officials) did explain the circumstances to us ... and also different things they have put in place so other residents aren't at a risk of something similar happening," Weidner said.
She said at this point the department of health's involvement does not rise to the level of an investigation, but added that a future investigation cannot be ruled out.
Neither Fargo police nor the state department of health have identified the facility involved.
Anyone with information regarding McKinnon's possible whereabouts is asked to call the department's tip line at 701-241-5777. Members of the public who believe they may have seen him are asked to call 911 immediately.
At one point in the search for McKinnon, police said he might have been spotted in video from the Love's Travel Stop on 32nd Avenue South near Interstate 29. It has since been determined the individual in the video was likely someone else.
McKinnon has dementia but knows his name and is capable of answering questions, according to Fargo police.
He has mobility issues and may not recognize where he is, police said, adding he has no access to a vehicle.
McKinnon is 5-foot-7, with gray hair, hazel eyes, glasses and a medium build. He was last seen wearing a black John Deere hat, blue jeans and black and gray plaid shirt.