Missing NC boy found safe

- UPDATE: Casey Hathaway has been found safe, according to Craven County Sheriff's Office.

Officials say challenging weather isn't stopping the search for a 3-year-old boy last seen playing near his grandmother's North Carolina home.

News outlets report heavy rains and strong winds are expected Thursday as officials search for Casey Hathaway, who has been missing since Tuesday.  

Craven County Sheriff Chip Hughes says the boy was playing with two other children in his grandmother's backyard in Ernul, but didn't come inside with them. He says investigators are following all leads, but they don't regard the disappearance as suspicious.

Related: Police: 3-year-old NC boy disappears from grandma's backyard

Hughes says Casey wasn't adequately dressed for the cold weather and he's concerned about sinkholes and deep water ditches in the area. He says divers are assessing nearby ponds.

The FBI's Charlotte Division says only professional searchers are participating because of weather-related safety concerns. Volunteer can sign up, but may not be used. 

Casey is 28 inches tall, weighs 25 pounds and has blond hair and brown eyes.

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