Police Conducting Major Search Operations to Locate Missing Clarksburg Teen
UPDATE at 7:30 pm: MCPD reports that Josh Cubert has been located in Black Hill Regional Park at about 7:00 pm Sunday evening. After being evaluated by medical personnel, Josh will be reunited with his family.
At about 6:00 pm last night, June 9, 19-year-old Joshua “Josh” Cubert ran away from his mother as they were walking to the playground near their home in Clarksburg and he has been missing ever since. Detectives say that Josh is diagnosed with Autism and is non-verbal. He is very shy, and while he is six-feet tall and 145 pounds, he functions at about four-year-old level.
Police have activated a task force to search for Josh, from a command area in the far rear parking lot of the Clarksburg Premium Outlets. MCPD has mobilized a small army of professional search and rescue personnel, trained civilian volunteers, neighbors, friends, and teachers from Josh’s school, as well as law enforcement officers from Loudon County and the Maryland State Police helicopter to search of Josh.
“Search operations kicked off yesterday evening,” said Lt. Amy Daum, of MCPD’s 5th District. “We did a pretty comprehensive search of the area last night, but it was dark. So we came back here today and started to do a more comprehensive search during daylight hours. When we get something like this when we don’t have someone who is immediately found, we call in neighboring jurisdictions and borrow other resources to put more people on the ground and have more eyes in the area. We are partnering with some civilian teams, such as the Community Emergency Response Team or CERT team, which is a group of civilians trained in search and rescue.”
MCPD’s search and rescue managers are also on scene. “We have people whose job it is to find people. They are checking the maps and coordinating our efforts to find him,” said Daum.
Police and volunteers have been going door-to-door talking to neighbors and distributing flyers and photos of Josh. “They have been out in the neighborhoods, making sure that everybody has flyers and knows what Josh looks like and what to do if they see him.”
Police are asking the public not to approach Josh, but rather call 9-1-1 first because police fear that Josh will run away and put himself in more dangerous situations. “We ask the public not to approach Josh,” said Daum. “He is not dangerous, but he is non-verbal and will probably run from anyone approaching him. He is probably scared and at this point agitated with his situation. We would not advise the public to approach him at this time.”
“If someone does find Josh, we ask they immediately call us at 9-1-1 so we can get officers in the area. Josh will probably run from anyone who approaches him. That is why we want to try to have a couple of people there so we can try to get him to a safe area where we can make contact with him and bring him back home,” she said.
Josh Cubert was last seen in the area near his home at 13700 block of Tribute Parkway in Clarksburg, which is part of the new Cabin Branch development adjacent to the Clarksburg Outlets. The area around that development is especially dangerous due to the number of homes and townhomes still under construction. There are many partially constructed homes, as well as, some thick wooded areas where Josh may be hiding.