Bushland search for missing Melbourne teen continues into the night

Autistic teen William Wall's dad, Shane, has broken down speaking of a mass search for the missing teen after he failed to return from a walk.

Bushland search for missing Melbourne teen continues into the night

Search crews have spent the night shouting the name of missing Victorian boy William Wall into the darkness as they continued in pitch black in their desperate bid to find him.

William, who has autism, vanished yesterday in the Yarra Ranges, northeast of Melbourne. He failed to return from his daily walk.


Darkness made the search even more difficult for SES crew members and volunteers last night, who continued shouting the 14-year-old's name and asking if he could hear them.

As the temperature dropped below 10C, police had to ask some volunteers to go home: the late search meant they were technically in breach of Melbourne's COVID-19 curfew.

William's father, Shane Wall, last night confirmed there had been no trace of his son despite hours of searching.


Mr Wall is especially concerned about his son's lack of food — he didn't have any when he left home yesterday morning, and gets distraught and confused when hungry.

"I've been out searching this afternoon as well as late this morning and also (with) his brothers," Mr Wall told 9News reporter Reid Butler.

"At the moment, everyone's hoping that he's going to be okay.

"If he's held up somewhere, just stay bloody warm. I just want him to reach out to someone if he sees someone."

William was last seen leaving for his daily walk on the Warburton Trail in Launching Place about 6.45am.

The teenager, who is high-functioning, fit, and knows the area well, told his family he would be gone for 15 minutes but he had not returned home or been seen since.

Mr Wall said William didn't have a phone with him.

"I just want him home, as simple as that. Just get home. That's all I want and be well."

Police launched an air and ground search, with the Air Wing, Specialist Solo's Unit, local police and the State Emergency Services combing bushland.

Victoria Police Acting Sergeant Jordan Kavanagh said William's disappearance was "out of character" and crews would continue searching until he was found.

"It's quite a vast area, there is a lot of difficult terrain to overcome, it's a 'heavily treed' canopy as well," he said.

"We have multiple agencies out here searching."

Police believe William may have gotten lost.

It is believed he may have been sighted by a witness during the day, narrowing the search down to a specific section of the trail.

"The witness has described an upset male matching the description," Sergeant Kavanagh said.

William is described as being 177cm tall, with a lean build, mousy brown hair and has a lazy right eye.

He was last seen wearing a dark hooded jumper, dark-coloured track pants, black runners and had a hydration pack across his chest.


Anyone who sees William or with information is urged to contact Mooroolbark Police Station on 9725 9999 or call triple-zero.

Source : 9 News More