Crime - Sacto 911

Deputies look for missing Rio Americano basketball player

Nicholas Sheehy ate pancakes with his family on Monday, left their Carmichael home and headed for school.

Then he disappeared.

The 15-year-old’s family has launched a social media campaign as part of an effort to find the Rio Americano High School freshman basketball player, who may have been distraught over his team’s loss at a weekend basketball game, said his father, Tom Sheehy. The team lost to Lincoln High School, 60-45. Nicholas was reported missing to the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department on Monday evening, according to the San Juan Unified School District.

“That day was just like a normal day. We got dressed, had pancakes, he got on his bike and said ‘See you at school,’ ” said Nicholas’ twin brother, Christopher Sheehy, during a break from basketball practice at the school Wednesday.

The Sheriff’s Department and the family are asking the community for help locating the teen. And friends and strangers alike turned into amateur sleuths in search of clues on the quickly launched Facebook page “Find Nicholas Sheehy.”

The teen is considered to be at-risk because it is not like him to leave in this way.

Nicholas is 6 feet 3 inches tall, 200 pounds, with light brown hair and blue eyes. When he left the family’s home in the 1900 block of Wingfield Way, he was wearing a tan hoodie, jeans and Nike athletic shoes. His bike is blue with a rack over the rear tire. He likely has clothing and cash, but he left his cellphone behind, authorities said.

“We are very concerned. We just don’t know what’s going on,” said Sheehy, a lobbyist with the Greenberg Traurig firm in Sacramento. “We don’t know if it’s a runaway or an abduction.”

Sheehy said his son has never run away before, but he fears Nicholas may have fled because he uncharacteristically left his cellphone in his bedroom when he headed out Monday morning.

“If he ran away, he didn’t want to be found,” Sheehy said.

And when he left for school, Nicholas was still emotional about his team’s performance during the game, his father said.

“He’s a very serious boy,” Sheehy said. “He wasn’t just upset. He was really upset about the basketball game.”

Christopher Sheehy said his brother was upset, but seemed to have processed the loss Sunday.

“I thought it he was over it,” Christopher Sheehy said.

The family is asking anyone with information to call the Sheriff’s Department at (916) 874-5115.

Call The Bee’s Ed Fletcher, (916) 321-1269. Bee staff writer Bill Lindelof contributed to this report

Related stories from Sacramento Bee