As police on the North Fork continue to search for 16-year-old Ashley Murray who was reported missing from Peconic last week, East End residents are reminded that nearby there is still another missing persons case being investigated.
Last week marked six months since a 50-year-old vacationer went missing in Montauk. What happened to George Richardson remains a mystery.
Richardson, his wife, and three sons were vacationing at Hartman's Briney Breezes Motel on Old Montauk Highway, when he vanished. An executive at Huntington Hospital, he was due to return home to Dix Hills on the morning of Aug. 28.
"It's still an open investigation," East Hampton Town Police Detective Sgt. Robert Gurney said on Tuesday. "We don't suspect any foul play," he said. While there have been no new developments, he said, "We do still have hope in regards to new information."
The department is working with several other agencies, Gurney said. The case has been entered into the National Missing and Unidentified Person System, a national centralized repository and recourse center for missing persons and unidentified decedent records. The database includes details such as the orange hat with Montauk written on it to the gold chain crucifix Richardson was last seen wearing.
Richardson's case is one 87,217 active missing persons recorded in the FBI's National Crime Information Center as of Dec. 31, 2012. About 37 percent of those missing were children under the age of 18 and about 17 percent of the total figure were for juveniles between the ages of 18 and 20, according to NCIC.
Last seen on Aug. 28 at about 1 that morning, police said his wife, Mary Richardson, reported him missing. Because he often went for walks on the beach early in the morning, police combed the ocean beach for clues. When he didn't turn up, police released his picture to the public. Tips poured in and an extensive search of the woods and beaches were conducted with the help of search dogs. They all came up empty.
Three weeks later, police released some more information — one of the family's body boards had also gone missing, perhaps offering a clue as to what Richardson planned to do when he left the motel room. Police released a photograph of a red body board with black and white stars, similar to one that went missing, hoping it would spark new leads.
His wife has not given any interviews, other than to issue a statement in September. "His disappearance has left a hole in the hearts of all those who love him," his wife said at the time.
"We know that Detective Sgt. Robert Gurney and his team are doing everything that they can to bring George back to us and for that, we are most grateful," the family said.
Anyone with information concerning his disappearance or about the body board are asked to contact the East Hampton Town Police Department's Detective Division at 631-537-7575 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All calls will remain confidential.
Richardson, whose photographs are attached here, is described as a white man, 5-foot-six-inches tall, 150 pounds, has short gray hair and wears reading glasses. He was last seen wearing running shoes and an orange "Montauk" hat seen in one of the photos (the rest of the clothes he is wearing in that photo were not the clothes he was last seen in). He has a small scar on his chin.