Search called off for supposed injured woodsman in Lyon County

YERINGTON - A search for a supposed injured woodsman was called off Friday morning and authorities are beginning to think the whole thing was a hoax.

Capt. Allan Veil of the Lyon County Sheriff's Department said after nearly 24 hours of searching the hills and valleys of Lyon County, search and rescue crews are no closer to finding the man who called dispatchers on Thursday claiming to have cut off his leg.

"It just looks at this time there is a real distinct possibility this is a hoax," he said.

At 11:56 a.m. Thursday, a male caller reached dispatchers on a business line and reported "he thought that he had cut his leg off and it was spurting blood," Veil said. The man went on to say he was cutting wood when it happened and he was getting dizzy.

"When the dispatcher tried to get verification, he got a little argumentative, and said, 'I said I was in the woods.'" Then the call was lost.

Veil said, because it came in on a business line, the number from which it came in was not logged.

Crews from Lyon County, Washoe County, Carson City, Douglas County and aircraft from the Nevada Army National Guard, worked until 9 a.m. Friday morning before the search was called off.

Lyon County covers 2,200 square miles and stretches from east of Interstate 80 south to the California line near Topaz Lake.

In February, Carson City Search and Rescue scoured the hills of Goni Canyon after a caller claimed he was out taking nature photos and became disoriented and lost.

The initial call for help came in at 11:56 a.m. He said he was visiting friends here from Florida, and had somehow gotten lost just as snow began to fall.

That search was called off two days later after investigators determined it was a hoax.

If it turns out that it was a hoax, the person responsible faces some potentially serious charges, including the misuse of 911.

He may also be liable for the cost of the search.

• Contact reporter F.T. Norton at or 881-1213.


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