Digging begins in Lake Harrison search for missing couple

It's been nearly a month since a Harrison couple was swept away in an apparent flash flood. As the search continues for John and Amy Villines, the water level in Lake Harrison has been drained as low as possible, and Crouse Construction began digging in the lake on Wednesday.

The Villines couple was in their vehicle on Highland Street Nov. 30th when it reportedly got swept away by the flood. According to the Harrison Daily Times, it was believed their bodies would have washed down the tunnel system draining into Lake Harrison. However, little evidence has been recovered after crews searched the tunnel, the lake and Crooked Creek downstream.

The Harrison City Council voted to contract with Crouse Construction to drain the lake and check the sediment for signs of the missing couple. Crouse was chosen to clean out the lake last year, and that was the third time it was cleaned out since it was created in the early 1990s.

Harrison Public Works Director Wade Phillips says there's not as much sediment since the lake was recently cleaned out. Phillips adds there's normally several feet of sediment on the south side of the channel.

Crouse Construction began in the area of the Main Street bridge Wednesday and planned to work upstream to the drainage tunnel. They will later work from the bridge to the weir.

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