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Authorities continue search for missing Rockford man
April 29, 2013

By Ryan Gueningsman
Managing Editor

ROCKFORD, MN – Wright County authorities continue to lead the search efforts for a man reported missing from Rockford early last week.

Samuel Adam Scherna Gustafson, 26, of Rockford, was reported missing April 21 just before 8 p.m.

Foul play is not suspected in Gustafson’s disappearance, but Wright County Sheriff Joe Hagerty said it is never ruled out until circumstances are known for sure.

Gustafson was last seen April 21 around 3 a.m. at 214 Beach Drive (Rockford Riverview Estates) in Rockford. A friend of Gustafson’s and the friend’s father both saw Gustafson at that time, according to Hagerty.

Later that morning, around 9 a.m., when Gustafson’s friend woke up, Gustafson was gone, and the friend assumed Gustafson had walked home, according to Hagerty.

That evening, when Gustafson’s parents returned home, they discovered their son was not home and drove to Riverview Estates to try to find him, Hagerty said. When he wasn’t located there, Gustafson’s parents flagged down a sheriff’s deputy.

Gustafson is a white male, 6’0, 190 pounds, with green eyes and brown hair, and a beard. He may be wearing a gray hooded sweatshirt and brown pants.

The sheriff’s office conducted a search of the Crow River in Rockford and the adjacent river banks Wednesday. The search did not turn up any additional information in the case.

Hagerty noted Thursday a family member of Gustafson’s located a shoe in the area that possibly was Gustafson’s.

Hennepin County has provided assistance in the form of a bloodhound tracking dog that has also searched the river area. The sheriff himself has walked the river banks a number of times.

“We’ve been up and down the river with the airboat, and we’ve checked phone records and bank accounts, jails, hospitals, and detox facilities,” Hagerty said. “We just don’t know where he is.”

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) is also involved with the search activities, and Hagerty said that agency takes care of a lot of data entry.

He said Gustafson has been entered in state and national databases as a missing and endangered person. Hagerty said Gustafson received the “endangered” status due to a mental illness Gustafson’s family told authorities he has.

“We’re considering absolutely everything,” Hagerty said. “His family is distressed and upset, and rightfully so. We’re taking this extremely seriously, throwing a lot of resources at it, and just trying to find him. Our fingers are crossed for the best.”

Anyone with information regarding Gustafson should contact the sheriff’s office at (763) 682-1162.

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