Search for Franklin man continues after shirt, sneaker found in marsh

FRANKLIN, MA (WHDH) - After uncovering possible clues in a Franklin man’s disappearance, police continued their search Tuesday for a missing 20-year-old who has not been seen since Sunday morning.

Police said the parents of Michael Doherty reported Sunday that their son had not returned home the previous night. Doherty, an engineering student at Duke University, was last seen at around 1 a.m. on Sunday in the area of Phyllis Lane in Franklin. Police said he had been attending a party with friends.

Doherty’s friends said they tried to get him to spend the night, but he instead insisted on walking to his home, which was about a half mile away. That was the last anyone saw of Doherty.

More than two days later, officials said they found clues at the edge of a swampy marsh.

“We found a shirt and a sneaker,” said Franklin Deputy Chief Jim Mill. “We’ve kind of staged at that point and are moving about where the search people believe that he might have gone.”

Officers spent hours on Sunday and Monday searching the woods, concentrating their efforts near bodies of water. The search was suspended Monday evening. It resumed Tuesday morning for a third day, with a larger search crews and two dive teams.

Doherty was last seen wearing a blue t-shirt with a Nike symbol, black pants and sneakers. He is a white male, 5 feet 10 inches tall with brown hair and brown eyes.

There’s no real path in the woods where Doherty is suspected to have gone missing, but friends believe he may have thought he could carve out a shortcut to his home.

Police have asked people in the area to be on alert and check any sheds or detached buildings for signs of the man. A reverse 911 call was sent out to people in the area, which provided them with a description of the man.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the Franklin Police at 508-528-1212.


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