63-year-old Fort Bragg man, Randy King, ventured into the hills south of Branscomb on Sunday, January 10 to test out his new e-bike. At approximately 4:00 p.m., he called his daughter Erin Malsom and told her his bike’s battery died and was lost. Malsom said her father then contacted Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office before his phone died and provided coordinates of his location. MCSO’s Public Information Officer Greg Van Patten said an MCSO sergeant attempted to find King with a 4×4 vehicle last night but, as of this morning, King remains missing.
Captain Van Patten did not that the sergeant did not that the Sheriff’s sergeant did locate King’s bicycle and bicycle tracks, but that did not lead to the discovery.
Mendocino County’s Search and Rescue Team has been deployed to aid in the search for King. SAR’s resources are stretched between this and another missing person search in the North County (see here for other search).
Malsom said deputies relayed to her that King would be “circling back” to find his e-bike that at one point he had abandoned in his attempts to find the way out of the woods.
Malsom said her father had a “sense of alarm” throughout the phone call, and she had never known him to get lost before.
King’s daughter characterized him as an experienced outdoorsman prone to long hikes and foraging for mushrooms.
Malsom said her father is “pretty thin” weighing approximately 140 pounds and standing 5’10’’. She said he has gray hair, a mustache, and blue eyes. The last time Malsom saw her father, he was wearing a camouflage jacket and blue jeans.
If you have any information regarding Randy King’s whereabouts, please call the Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office (707)463-4086.
UPDATE 11:25 a.m.
Richard King’s daughter Erin Malson reported Mendocino County Search and Rescue have successfully located the missing man simply telling her he is “okay” after spending the night out in the elements.