Local News

Body found in Massachusetts woods believed to be missing Duke student

Posted May 20

— Two people searching for 20-year-old Duke student Michael Doherty found a body of a white male in the woods near Interstate 495 in Massachusetts. Police believe it to be Doherty.

At a news conference Saturday evening, Franklin Police Chief Thomas Lynch said they are awaiting confirmation that the body found is Michael Doherty's. He offered thoughts and prayers to the Doherty's family.

Positive confirmation will not be available until the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner releases the identity.

Police do not suspect foul play in Doherty's disappearance, but the investigating is ongoing.

Doherty, a 20-year-old rising junior majoring in engineering, was reported missing Sunday, May 14 after attending a party with friends in his hometown of Franklin, Mass.

His family said Doherty, who had recently returned home for the summer, decided to walk alone in the rain from the party back to his house a mile away. He was reported missing later that day.

On Monday, police found Doherty's sneakers and shirt at the edge of a swamp in the area. Multiple law enforcement agencies and drones were used in the search.

Police said they don't suspect any foul play in his disappearance.

Michael Doherty, missing Duke student

“We have heard the sad news about the police report, and our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the Doherty family during this difficult time,” said Kristen Brown, a Duke University spokesperson.

Some of Doherty's classmates from Duke went to Massachusetts and friends of the Doherty family were involved in the six-day search.


Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

Oldest First
View all