St. Louis County Police officials said crews are still looking for missing 12-year-old Christopher Marks while the screech of rail cars rumble in the background of nearby railroad tracks. In this continued hot weather, family members who have stood vigil at the scene since yesterday were starting to feel the affects of dehydration, mixed with nerves.
Marks, from Affton, has been missing since Sunday evening from the Meramec River in Pacific Palisades Conservation Area near the -Pacific borderline. He was at the river with his stepfather, twin sister and four friends.
Lt. James Mundel said in a Monday afternoon statement at the incident site that crews are still looking to find the boy and while the public's interest is appreciated, police are asking that volunteers do not come join the search.
"It can interfere with our tracking dogs," he said.
One such volunteer who showed up right before the police statement was Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) member Kevin McLean, who came with gear and a large bottle of cold water, ready to walk the terrain. He is a friend of one of the family members, who all said they wanted to canvass the area while it was still daylight.
Steve Armstrong trekked about 600 to 700 yards in the outer area outside of the police barracaded area earlier today. He said brush is so thick, however, people just can't get through.
Police indicated they are worried about volunteers getting injured in such terrain, let alone possibly lost themselves in the heavy underbrush.
KMOV's Emily Rau is reporting via Twitter that Christopher had beer.
"Chris' sister says he did have a few drinks of a beer last night. But says he could handle the strong current," her Tweet reported.
After the police statement, media asked Mundel if they were pursuing the underage drinking allegations. He said every angle would be investigated but that no arrests had been made to date.
Our 4 p.m. Story Prior to the Police Statement
A statement from authorities on the latest developments in the Christopher Marks case has been scheduled for 4:05 p.m.
Marks, 12, has been missing since Sunday evening from the Meramec River in Pacific Palisades Conservation Area near the -Pacific borderline. He was at the river with his stepfather, twin sister and four friends.
The family accompanying Marks looked for him on their own prior to call police at approximately 7:30 p.m. Sunday.
About 50 officers and canine teams have been working the area consecutively since last night.
Eureka-Wildwood Patch is on the scene and will have updates as soon as they become available.
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Marks will turn 13 years old on Sept. 21. He will be a seventh grader at Rogers Middle School in Affton. He has a twin sister, Anna-Marie, who is "attempting to initiate twin telepathy" to help locate him.
Combs was not present when the incident occurred, but there was one adult with the group who had been picnicing and enjoying Sunday evening near the river. She said the abundant foliage of the tree-laden area challenged the ifrared technology of the search helicopters last night, so family members hoped the search crews would have better luck in today's bright light ambiance.