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Missing student Riley Strain’s bank card found near Tennessee river, police say

‘The search for him continues,’ authorities said

Kelly Rissman
Sunday 17 March 2024 20:58 GMT
CCTV released by police shows 22-year-old missing student Riley Strain crossing road

The bank card of missing University of Missouri student Riley Strain was recovered near the Cumberland River in Nashville more than one week after the college senior vanished.

“Riley Strain’s bank card was discovered this afternoon on the embankment between Gay St. And the Cumberland River,” Metro Nashville Police Department wrote on X on the afternoon of 17 March.

“The search for him continues,” authorities added.

Mr Strain, 22, was last seen at a bar in Nashville — as part of a trip with his fraternity — on 8 March.

Security asked him to leave, prompting a probe into whether he had been overserved. However, the bar owners on 15 March said that he had just been served one alcoholic drink and two waters before being escorted out.

“No members of Riley’s party were required to stay inside the venue to close any open tabs, and no one from Luke’s 32 Bridge team prevented anyone from Riley’s party from leaving the venue with him,” the owners wrote.

After Mr Strain left the bar, he spoke with his friends on the phone and told them he would meet them at the Tempo Hotel, where the group was staying.

However, security footage from 9.45pm captured the college student stumbling and holding his head while walking in the opposite direction of the hotel.

Minutes later, another security camera showed him near Gay Street. This is the last video footage to capture Mr Strain before his disappearance.

A location sharing app that Mr Strain had installed on his phone caught him moving a few blocks north of Gay Street and James Robertson Parkway, near the Cumberland River, around 9.53pm — further still from his hotel.

Between 10 and 10.30pm, Mr Strain’s phone pinged near Public Square Park, near the Cumberland River, according to FOX17. This is the last signal sent from his phone.

After his friends returned to their hotel and realized Mr Strain had not made it there safely, they began searching for him. They reported him missing at 1.46am.

Police have been searching for him by land and by air, with boats and helicopters scanning the areas he was last seen — including near the Cumberland River.

On 14 March, police revealed that homeless residents at two encampments near the Cumberland River said they had spotted Mr Strain on the night he disappeared. However, they didn’t know where he went after they saw him.

Authorities have also said that there is no evidence to suggest that any foul play was involved.

His parents came to Nashville to help with the search and more than a week later, they said they remained “very hopeful.”

“We’re still, you know, actively planning to bring Riley home with us,” Chris Whiteid, Mr Strain’s stepfather told NBC News on 16 March.

“We’re very hopeful and we’re moving forward as, you know, he’s coming home and we’re graduating in May and life goes on just as normal,” he added.

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