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Police found piece of missing Harvard man’s clothing in Casco Bay

Posted May 21, 2012, at 5:30 p.m.
Last modified May 22, 2012, at 8:09 a.m.
Nathan Bihlmaier and Nancy Ho Bihlmaier recently.
Portland Police Department
Nathan Bihlmaier and Nancy Ho Bihlmaier recently.
At a press conference Monday afternoon on the waterfront, Portland Police Chief Michael Sauchuck asks for the public's help in finding Nathan Bihlmaier, 31, of Cambridge, Mass., who went missing Saturday night after leaving an Old Port bar.
Troy R. Bennett | BDN
At a press conference Monday afternoon on the waterfront, Portland Police Chief Michael Sauchuck asks for the public's help in finding Nathan Bihlmaier, 31, of Cambridge, Mass., who went missing Saturday night after leaving an Old Port bar.
Divers search for Nathan Bihlmaier between wharves on the Portland waterfront early Monday evening. Bihlmaier went missing early Sunday morning.
Divers search for Nathan Bihlmaier between wharves on the Portland waterfront early Monday evening. Bihlmaier went missing early Sunday morning. Buy Photo
A U.S. Coast Guard boat joins the search for Nathan Bihlmaier between wharves on the Portland waterfront early Monday evening. Bihlmaier went missing early Sunday morning.
A U.S. Coast Guard boat joins the search for Nathan Bihlmaier between wharves on the Portland waterfront early Monday evening. Bihlmaier went missing early Sunday morning. Buy Photo

PORTLAND, Maine — Police Chief Michael Sauschuck said Monday that investigators have found an article of clothing belonging to soon-to-be Harvard Business School graduate Nathan Bihlmaier, who went missing from the Old Port early Sunday morning.

During a news conference on Monday afternoon, Sauschuck declined to say what article of clothing was found but said the item was found in Casco Bay near the Maine State Pier and Ri Ra Irish Pub, where he last was seen just after midnight Sunday. The chief asked for the public’s help in finding the missing Cambridge, Mass., man.

Sauschuck also said police “are very concerned for Nathan’s well-being.”

“At this point we’ve ruled out no options on this,” Sauschuck said. “We’re not sure what happened to Nate. We do have some divers in the water, and that concern is really just to look at all options. It’s certainly a possibility that Nate could be lost in our fair city, or maybe caught a ride somewhere, but given the information we have at hand, we are concerned with the proximity of the waterfront to where he was last seen.”

Bihlmaier, 31, was in the city with two friends celebrating his graduation when he was asked to leave Ri Ra around 12:20 a.m., the chief said, “for having a little bit too much to drink.”

“At that point he left the bar very cooperatively — there were no altercations; he just left voluntarily after being spoken to by bar staff,” Sauschuck said. “He subsequently had a couple of phone conversations with friends. Shortly thereafter, they lost contact with Nathan and we’re not sure what happened to him.”

Bihlmaier’s friends reported him missing to Portland police around 9 a.m. Monday, the chief said.

Sauschuck said the search has involved the U.S. Coast Guard, South Portland dive team, Maine Marine Patrol, harbor patrol and the Portland Fire Department. He said Maine State Police are slated to bring in side-scanning sonar to search the harbor as well.

Bihlmaier and his wife reportedly are expecting their first child.

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