Subject of Niagara River search is Buffalo-area businessman missing since Monday night


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LEWISTON, New York — Authorities say the man whose disappearance prompted a search along the Niagara River earlier this week is a well-known Buffalo-area businessman.

Police in Lewiston in Niagara County tell local media that 51-year-old Dominic Hofert left his house late Monday night without telling his wife where he was going. After she contacted authorities, police found a single set of footprints in the snow leading to the nearby lower Niagara River.

A search involving the local U.S. Coast Guard station and police and fire crews was launched. Authorities suspended their search on Tuesday after finding no sign of Hofert, owner of Hofert Jewelers in Kenmore.

Police say they have ruled out foul play and have no reason to believe he was distraught.

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