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Missing man found in Walmart after Tabor City search

A senior citizen who left the Waterbrook nursing home in Tabor City Saturday was found safely in Walmart a few hours later.

Capt. Greg Sibbett of the Tabor City Police said the man, who is 89, walked away from the nursing home sometime before 2 p.m. Patrolmen S.P. Conner and C. Cotton were immediately notified, and began searching for the patient.

An alarm sounded when the patient slipped out the door of the nursing home, but the man escaped before workers could make their way around to intercept him.

Officers canvassed the neighborhood and entered the patient on the national missing persons watchlist, but couldn’t find any sign of where he went.

“We weren’t having any luck,” Sibbett said, “but the Department of Corrections was kind enough to help us out with a bloodhound.”

The dog tracked the missing man from the nursing home to a parking lot on U.S. 701 before the trail disappeared. The patient was found Saturday night around 7:30 at the Walmart in Whiteville. He was unhurt, Sibbett said.

Whiteville Police Officer J. Hill transported the patient to Columbus Regional, where he was found to be unhurt.

“We were concerned about his mental and physical well-being due to the hot weather,” Sibbett said. “We appreciate the K-9 unit helping us out.”


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