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No clues found in intense search for missing Hall man
Taylor Kapiloff, 19, of Gainesville was last seen on Nov. 18
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Greg Hicks, a safety officer from North Georgia Mounted Search and Rescue, and Bill Blank, of Hall County EMA Search and Rescue, talk at the command post Saturday before heading out to search for Taylor Kapiloff. Kapiloff, 19, disappeared from his North Hall home in November. - photo by Erin O. Smith

Tip line

Anyone with any knowledge of TayloKapiloff’s disappearance or whereabouts is encouraged to call the Criminal Investigations Division at 770-531-6897 or the anonymous tip line at 770-503-3232.

A team of 42 volunteers from a variety of agencies did not find any clues Saturday into Taylor Kapiloff’s whereabouts during a search for the missing man conducted in Hall County, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

“Unfortunately we were unsuccessful in locating any new evidence in this search for Taylor (Kapiloff),” Nicole Bailes of the Hall County Sheriff’s Office said in an email.

Kapiloff, a 19-year-old Gainesville man, was last seen at his home on Bourbon Drive in Hall County around 3 p.m. Nov. 18.

No signs of foul play are suspected in his disappearance and he is still classified as a missing person, Bailes said.

Hall County EMA SAR, Alpha Team K-9 Search and Rescue, SARDOG of Georgia, Georgia Appalachian Trail Club SAR, Northeast Georgia Mounted SAR and Piedmont Region K-9 Search and Rescue were all involved in the search, which began at 9 a.m. at Cool Springs Park on Cool Springs Road in North Hall County.

“These are some of the most highly trained searchers in North Georgia that are here today,” Allen Padgett, an official with South East Search and Rescue Associates and the event’s planning chief, said before the search began.

Many of those who participated in the search were retired or active law enforcement officials. They all volunteered for the effort, which lasted until a little after 3 p.m. and employed 11 K-9 police dog units.

Saturday’s search was different from previous efforts, which have focused primarily on locating Kapiloff himself.

“What we’re looking for (today) are clues that (Kapiloff) has been in the area or is in the area,” Robert Copelan, team leader of Hall County EMA Search Team, said before the search began. “What’s different now is we’re looking for those little details that would show he was there or some evidence that he may still be in the area.”

In total, volunteers and law enforcement agencies have searched more than 1,600 acres for any sign of Kapiloff.

Kapiloff left without a vehicle or wallet, taking only his cellphone.

According to Padgett, who is now retired after a 34-year career with the Department of Natural Resources, volunteers or other law enforcement officials may now revisit territory they’ve already covered to move forward with the search.

“It’s like when you lose your remote in the living room — it’s there, but how long does it take you to find it?” Padgett, who has been personally involved in over 100 searches, said. “It may be sitting out on the coffee table and you looked at it a dozen times and never saw it. Basically we either expand or continue developing leads. We’ll keep at it.”

Those who are focused on finding Kapiloff aren’t deterred by Saturday’s results.

“Sometimes you never know, but what we’re trying to do is give the family closure,” Padgett said. “They’re the other victims in this, and not knowing is tough.”

Kapiloff stands at 5 feet, 7 inches tall and weighs approximately 200 pounds. He has brown hair and green eyes.

He was last seen wearing a red shirt, black pants and black Polo jacket.

The family is offering a $1,000 reward for any information regarding his whereabouts.

Anyone with any knowledge of Kapiloff’s disappearance or whereabouts is encouraged to call the Criminal Investigations Division at 770-531-6897 or the anonymous tip line at 770-503-3232.

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