Buffalo Police resume search and rescue efforts in Niagara River looking for missing BPD officer

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - The search and rescue efforts are resuming as more than a dozen agencies are entering the Niagara River at the spot where Officer Craig Lehner was seen last.

The veteran member of the the Buffalo Police Department went missing Friday afternoon around 12:50 during an underwater rescue training exercise. Police say it’s a routine drill and something the officers on the underwater rescue team go through monthly.

Lt. Jeff Rinaldo says he doesn’t want to speculate about what went wrong – only saying that something did. The water around the area where the officer was training moves rapidly, at about 12 to 15 knots, making it a very dangerous stretch of the river. Police have not disclosed how much oxygen was left in the officer’s tank at the time he went missing.

Officer Lehner, 34, joined the police force in 2008. His primary duty is with the K-9 unit; he’s partnered with a German Shepherd named Shield.

He has been a part of the underwater rescue crew for about a year. Police say his diving uniform isn’t equipped with any sort of tracking device.

According to police, this remains a search and rescue endeavor at the time, as the lieutenant says they’re continuing to hold out hope for their own.

Agencies are looking by land, sea, and air for Officer Craig Lehner.

The Rochester Locust Club has confirmed that the Rochester Police Department scuba team is assisting in the search.


More Stories

Don't Miss

  • Adam Interviews
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Extraordinary People
  • Plugged-In Parent
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Ask The Experts
    Copyright 2018 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
  • Games and Puzzles

Trending Stories

Latest News

Video Center