'Misguided' Youth Who Wandered into Canada Located Safely

Updated: July 08, 2019 09:52 PM

A teen who intentionally wandered away from a group in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness has been located safely after he apparently spent several nights alone in a remote part of Quetico Provincial Park.

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Ontario Provincial Police Constable Jim Davis says the 17-year-old from Omaha was with a wilderness survival youth group at Basswood Lake, which is on the international border, when he left last Wednesday morning.  After an internationally-coordinated search effort, the youth was located on Saturday morning.

Davis says the teen had told a few of his friends that he planned to wander away from the group to meet up with some friends in Canada but apparently wasn't aware of the large size of the park.  Davis says the teen had taken a few supplies including life jacket, map, compass, and water purification equipment.

Numerous agencies participated in the search, including the OPP's Emergency Response Team, the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, Ontario Parks, Canadian Border Services Agency and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, the Lake County Sheriff's Department, and the St. Louis County Search and Rescue Squad.

After being located, the teen was returned to Minnesota by Canadian immigration officials.  Davis says no charges will be filed and described it as a case of a misguided youth.

This story has been updated to reflect a corrected timeline of when the youth was reported missing and when he was found, as provided by authorities.

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