Internet Sleuths Believe They Hear Missing Missouri Student Riley Strain Talk About Getting Into A Car In Police Body Cam Video

Riley Strain
Metro Nashville Police Department

Did he get into a car?

Up until now, the search for missing University of Missouri student Riley Strain has largely focused on the area near the river where his last known location was.

The 22-year old went missing here in Nashville over a week ago while on a fraternity trip after being asked to leave Luke’s 32 Bridge, which is Luke Bryan’s bar on Broadway in downtown Nashville.

After leaving the bar, Strain was seen on video appearing to be extremely intoxicated, even falling down at one point. And his last known location was near Gay Street and 1st Avenue, by the James Robertson Parkway Bridge which crosses the Cumberland River.

But since then, there’s been no sign of the missing student – at least until his debit card was found over the weekend by a couple of TikTokers searching the river bank.

And yesterday, Metro Nashville police released bodycam footage that shows one of their officers interacting with Strain as he walked on Gay Street, just feet from where he would ultimately go missing.

At first glance, the video showing the conversation between Strain and Officer Reginald Young appears to be pretty unremarkable. The officer asks the student how he’s doing, Strain is polite in his response, and doesn’t seem to be overly intoxicated or in any sort of distress.

But as websleuths dug deeper into the brief interaction, many are convinced that there’s more to the video than what we initially thought.

Many online are convinced that, if you listen closely to the video, you can hear Strain talking – presumably on the phone – to somebody about getting into a car.

@justusbros #RileyStrain #rileystrain #lukes32bridge #nashvilletn #nashville #missingperson #missingpersons #abduction ♬ original sound – justicebros

@flodaddyflo Riley Strain got in a car!? #rileystrain ♬ Solas X Interstellar – Gabriel Albuquerqüe

Obviously the supposed conversation is hard to hear or decipher, so we really don’t know if he was talking to somebody else or not.

But according to the theories, this would explain why Strain seemingly disappeared from the body cam video – and from Gay Street – shortly after interacting with the officer.

It’s all speculation at this point, and doesn’t really explain why Strain’s debit card would be found on the river bank. And there was also a reported sighting of a homeless man wearing Strain’s distinctive black and white shirt days after his appearance, though police or the family have not confirmed that information yet.

I’m sure the theory that he got into a car is being looked into, as are all possible theories, as the police and family continue their desperate search for the missing college student.

Luke Bryan’s Bar Offers New Details

Obviously much focus has been Luke’s 32 Bridge, located at 301 Broadway, since that was the last place that Strain was seen by his friends while in town for a fraternity event.

Luke’s is less than a 10 minute walk from the spot that Strain was seen in the video released by police, and obviously on a Friday night Broadway and the surrounding areas are full of partygoers.

TC Restaurant Group, the operator and owner of Luke’s bar, released a statement on Strain’s disappearance last week, indicating that they’re working closely with authorities in the search for the missing college student:

“TC Restaurant Group, operator and owner of Luke’s 32 Bridge, is continuing to work closely with the Metro Nashville Police Department to provide security camera footage and any other potentially helpful information to aid in the search for Riley Strain. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones for his safe return.”

But according to Riley’s family, the bar refused to let his friends accompany him when he was kicked out of the bar.

During an interview with NewsNation, Strain’s parents say that their son was asked to leave the bar due to being “over served.” But they also claim that the bar would not let his friends leave with him at that point.

In a statement to WSMV, TABC Communications Director Aaron Rummage confirmed that his department was investigating the bar’s conduct on the evening of Strain’s disappearance:

“There are no specific rules or statutes that governs escorting out intoxicated patrons from their businesses or providing assistance in getting someone home. However, state law prohibits serving alcoholic beverages to someone who is visibly intoxicated. A violation is a class A misdemeanor. The TABC has opened an investigation into this matter to see if any violations have occurred.”

But TC Restaurant group issued a statement late last week disputing that Strain was over served while in the bar, and claiming that he was asked to leave through the front door, not a back door as has been previously reported:

“In our effort to help the Nashville Metro Police Department’s Missing Persons investigation of Riley Strain, we proactively provided detailed information quickly after his visit to our business on March 8.

This information included all security camera footage, photos of Riley at our establishment with detailed time stamps, transaction records, and staff accounts. Additionally, we proactively engaged in communication with the Tennessee Alcoholic Beverage Commission and will continue to communicate and provide any records needed to aid their ongoing investigation.

During Riley’s visit to Luke’s 32 Bridge, our records show he purchased and was served one alcoholic drink and two waters. At 9:35 p.m., our security team made a decision based on our conduct standards to escort him from the venue through our Broadway exit at the front of our building. He was followed down the stairs with one member of his party. The individual with Riley did not exit and returned upstairs.

Our prayers continue to be with Riley’s friends and family during this difficult time and for his safe return.”

And in a follow-up question asked by WZTV reporter Kelly Avellino, the bar confirmed that nobody at Luke’s prevented Riley’s friends from leaving with him when he was escorted out:

“No members of Riley’s party were required to stay inside the venue to close any open tabs, and no one from our team prevented anyone from Riley’s party from leaving the venue with him.”

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock