UPDATE: Large-scale search ends without arrest

Friday, May 9, 2014 | 11:51 p.m. CDT; updated 3:13 p.m. CDT, Saturday, May 10, 2014

COLUMBIA —A large-scale search for a man whose description matched that of a suspect in a recent string of residential break-ins ended without an arrest.

At 7:49 p.m. Friday, police received a call about a suspicious person near the 3100 block of Rock Quarry Road, Stroer said. When officers went to check on the man, he ran into the woods, and officers pursued him on foot.

Columbia police and officers from the Sheriff's Department brought in K-9 units, and a Missouri State Highway Patrol helicopter was searching the wooded area before the search was scaled back.

Shortly after 10 p.m., MU Police issued a notice that they were helping in the search for the man, who was headed toward campus. He was last seen in the Hinkson Creek area south of campus, according to the release.

About 11:45 p.m., police scaled back the search, Police Department spokeswoman Latisha Stroer said. Officers would continue to search the area through the night, she said Friday, but not in the same numbers as earlier, when personnel from MU Police Department, Boone County Sheriff's Department and Missouri State Highway Patrol were working with the Columbia police to search for the suspect.

Stroer said the personwas described as a white male wearing a black shirt and khaki shorts or pants. According to the release, he is in his 30s, and 6 feet to 6 feet 2 inches tall with an athletic build. 

Police advised anyone who sees a person matching this description to call 9-1-1.

According to a Police Department news release, the man was possibly involved in a series of break-ins in southeast Columbia. Earlier Friday, the department sent out a release about a series of increasingly violent break-ins that have occurred in May, including one early Friday morning in which a man with a knife entered a residence through an unlocked door and sexually assaulted a woman. Police believed the reported crimes were related.

Columbia police asked anyone with any additional information to contact law enforcement at 442-6131 or Crime Stoppers at 875-8477 to remain anonymous.

Supervising editor is Allie Hinga.

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