UPDATE: - Wednesday, December 5, 2018 @ 4:10 p.m.
This afternoon Roanoke County Police, in conjunction with Roanoke County Fire & Rescue an the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, concluded the search for Paul Youmans who ha been missing since Monday.
Youmans was located by a search team shortly after 1:00 p.m. in the area that had been previously noted as an area of interest off the hiking trail leading to Dragon's Tooth. Youmans was found deceased from what appears to be a self-inflicted wound.
Personnel will continue working in the area throughout the evening. Roanoke County Police continue to investigate and would like to thank the public for their willingness to assist and for remaining outside the area while the technical rescue teams conducted the search.
UPDATE - December 5, 2018
The Roanoke County Police Department continues their search today for a missing 34-year-old Roanoke man, Paul W. Youmans.
The department is extremely grateful for the offers from a number of citizens to help with the search for Youmans in the Dragon's Tooth area of Catawba Mountain. However, this is an operation involving specially trained technical rescue personnel and police operating in very hazardous terrain and adverse weather conditions. Well-meaning citizens attempting to help search could hamper the ability for the dogs to track scents, thus interfering with he operation. There's also concern that someone might sustain injuries while trying to navigate the hazardous terrain, pulling resources away from the operation to tend to those injuries. The Police Department is asking people to avoid the trail area while the search operation is underway.
On Monday, December 3, 2018, at approximately 5:30 p.m.Roanoke County Police were called to a well‐being check in the 3600 block of Georgetown Road. Upon arrival police were notified by a friend that Paul W. Youmans, 34, of Roanoke County was missing and had not been seen since early in the morning. Youmans is described as 5'9, approximately 140 lbs, with brown hair and blue eyes. There is no clothing description at this time.
Through their investigation officers were able to locate his vehicle in the parking lot near the hiking trails leading to Dragon’s Tooth in Catawba. A search was conducted by Roanoke County Police and Fire & Rescue, along with the assistance of several local blood hound tracking groups. The search was suspended around midnight due to darkness and the steep, rocky terrain of the trail system that was being searched.
On Tuesday, December 4, Roanoke County Police with the assistance of Roanoke County Fire & Rescue and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management resumed the search. As of this time Mr. Youmans has not been located.
Anyone with information is asked to call the Roanoke County Emergency Communications Center at (540) 562‐3265.