Woman walking dogs led to searchers finding Casey Hathaway

CRAVEN COUNTY, NC (WITN) A woman walking her dogs Thursday night led to searchers finding a toddler who had been missing for more than two days.

Casey Hathaway was last reported in good condition at CarolinaEast Medical Center in New Bern.

The hospital told WITN this morning that the Hathaway family is asking for privacy as he recovers and no additional updates will be provided unless something changes.

Dr. Nicole Check, who is treating the child, said in a statement that he is resting now. "His family is over the moon excited that he is back with them," the doctor said. "He will probably be released on Saturday."

The toddler was last seen around 1:45 p.m. Tuesday when two other young children went inside the Toler Road home without him. Sheriff Chip Hughes says the boy's great-grandmother was inside the home at the time.

Linda Fraker was walking her dog down Aurora Road heard a child crying and alerted a member of the search team.

“I thought I heard crying, but I didn’t want to confuse it with all the search that was going on on the other side of the woods. So I brought the dogs inside, and I went back out, and I listened again, and again, I heard just a crying," Fraker told WITN.

The woman said she ran up to Toler Road and asked an officer to come down and listen

"Next thing I know he was coming back and telling me that yes, he heard something too," Fraker said. "The next thing I know everybody was running up there and I heard he was found”

"It's scary," Sheriff Hughes told us this morning. "Listen, I'm a grown man and I would not want to go through what that child went through. If you put yourself out there and close your eyes, the sounds, the fact that the weather was terribly cold, and you're lost and have no idea what's going on."

Meanwhile, the Ernul community will hold a celebration Friday night that Casey was found safe. The 6:30 p.m. event will be at the New Haven Church at 2855 Aurora Road.



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Three-year-old Casey Hathaway was found alive and safe Thursday night after an extensive three-day search.

The toddler is currently receiving medical treatment at CarolinaEast Medical Center in New Bern. A spokesperson for the hospital says they are expected to provide an update on his condition sometime Friday morning.

Hathaway is said to be in good health after he was reportedly lost in the woods for three days.

Chocowinity EMS Captain Shane Grier found Hathaway in the woods off Aurora Road around 9:30 p.m., about a quarter mile from where he disappeared, after following up on a tip officials received about a child crying.

Authorities say Hathaway was calling out for his mother. They say he was cold and wet with a few cuts and scrapes, but was overall in good spirits and talking.

As of Friday morning, Hathaway is still a patient at CarolinaEast Medical Center, although crews at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville are on standby should his condition warrant being flown there.

We will continue to keep you updated both on air and online as we learn more information.



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Three-year-old Casey Hathaway of Craven County, missing since Tuesday afternoon, was found alive Thursday night along Aurora Road, about a quarter of a mile from where he disappeared from on Toler Road, according to Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes.

Hughes said he was found after following up on a tip they received of a crying child. He was located 40 to 50 yards in the woods calling for his mother.

It was Chocowinity EMS Captain Shane Grier who found Hathaway.

He was taken to CarolinaEast Medical Center, and his parents said he seemed to be doing OK, even said he wanted to watch Netflix.

Hughes says Casey was still wearing the clothes he was reported to have had on when he was last seen.

Officials don't believe he was in that location the whole time, saying they believe he moved around the area, but there was no reason to believe he was abducted or kidnapped.

Casey's parents thanked the community for their thoughts and prayers and efforts in search.



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Statement from FBI: Casey has been found alive. He was located by professional search and rescue crews off Toler and Aurora Roads.

He is in good health, is talking and being evaluated by doctors at Carolina East Medical Center.

He is with his family. Thank you all for helping us #FindCasey.



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Three-year-old Casey Hathaway has been found alive in Craven County shortly before 9:30 p.m. Thursday.

Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes tells WITN that the toddler is alert and was able to tell authorities his name and his age.

Casey has been taken to CarolinaEast for further evaluation.

Authorities have been looking for the 3-year-old since Tuesday afternoon in the Toler and Aurora Road area of the Ernul.

We will continue to bring you more details as they are released.