Archives For Missing


Mass. boys were separated from scout group

DUBLIN, N.H. — Conservation officers with the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department helped locate two lost hikers on Mt. Monadnock in Dublin, N.H. Saturday.

Officials said a 12-year-old boy and a 14-year-old boy, both from Massachusetts, were separated from their scout group while descending the summit around 3:30 p.m. Once they realized they were lost, the boys used a cellphone to call 911.

Officers obtained GPS coordinates from the call and responded. However, one of the boys’ fathers – who was also a group chaperone – located them on the Pumpelly Trail around 7:15 p.m.

Officials said the boys were not injured.


John Crocker missing since Wednesday

Rockport police

BOSTON — The Massachusetts State Police and Rockport police are asking for the public’s help in finding John Crocker, 83, of Rockport.

Crocker was last seen in Rockport on Wednesday at 5 p.m. Police said he suffers from Alzheimer’s disease and walks with a cane.

Crocker is blind in one eye and has limited vision in the other eye. He also has hearing loss but he does not always wear his hearing aids, police said.

Crocker was last seen wearing blue jeans, a brown sweater and a yellowish jacket. He has a thick gray and white beard and is believed to have left on foot. He likes to visit the Beech Grove Cemetery and Kelly’s Pit in Rockport.

Anyone who sees, might have seen, or has information on Crocker’s whereabouts is urged to contact Rockport police at 978-546-1212 or 911.


Ayla Reynolds reported missing December 2011

Ayla Reynolds still missing two years later

Ayla’s father, Justin DiPietro, said he last saw his daughter on the night of Dec. 16, 2011.

WMTW Image

WATERVILLE, Maine — The mother of missing Maine toddler Ayla Reynolds has asked the county attorney to bring child endangerment charges against the girl’s father.

In a March 24 letter to the Morning Sentinel, Trista Reynolds says Ayla was in Justin DiPietro’s care when he reported her missing on Dec. 17, 2011. Investigators found blood inside the home, and have concluded the child is no longer alive and was a victim of foul play.

Reynolds has asked the county prosecutor to bring child endangerment charges against DiPietro before the statute of limitations runs out in nine months.

The county prosecutor says her office has no jurisdiction over the case since it was transferred to the attorney general’s office.

The deputy attorney general told the newspaper that he cannot discuss any possible charges in the case.


Ricardo Dagraca, 27, missing since early March

Boston Police

BOSTON — Boston police have asked the public for help finding a 27-year-old Dorchester man who has not been seen since March 4.

According to police, Ricardo Dagraca was last seen leaving his home around 5 a.m. on March 4.

Dagraca is described by police as a black male, 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighing around 155 pounds with a medium build, black hair and brown eyes.

Police said Dagraca may have some mental health issues. They say he has been known to frequent the Pawtucket and Central Falls areas of Rhode Island, as well as Weymouth, Mass.

Anyone with information regarding Dagraca’s location is advised to call 911 or Boston police at 617-343-4335


VIDEO: At least 8 have died and 18 are missing after a mudslide in a rural area of Washington State.

The search for survivors of a deadly Washington state mudslide grew Monday to include 108 names of people who were reported missing or were unaccounted for, but authorities cautioned the figure would likely decline dramatically.

Still, the size of the list raised concerns the death toll would rise far above the eight people who have been confirmed dead after the 1-square-mile slide Saturday swept through part of a former fishing village about 55 miles northeast of Seattle. Several people also were critically injured. About 30 homes were destroyed, and the debris blocked a 1-mile stretch of state highway.

“The situation is very grim,” Snohomish County Fire District 21 Chief Travis Hots said, stressing that authorities are still in rescue mode and are holding out hope. But he noted: “We have not found anyone alive on this pile since Saturday.”

Adding to the worries was that the slide struck Saturday morning, a time of the weekend when most people are at home. Of the 49 structures in the neighborhood hit by the slide, authorities believe at least 25 were occupied full-time.

Snohomish County emergency management director John Pennington said the list of 108 names was pulled together from various sources that authorities are working from, and it doesn’t mean there are that many injuries or fatalities.

Among the possible missing are construction workers coming into the neighborhood and people just driving by.

“It’s a soft 108,” Pennington said.

Search and rescue teams took to the air in helicopters and the ground on foot on Sunday looking for anyone who might still be alive. Their spirits had been raised late Saturday night when they heard the cries for help from the flotsam of trees, dirt and wreckage.

Dangerous conditions forced them to turn back in the darkness.

Snohomish County sheriff’s Lt. Rob Palmer said four bodies were discovered late Sunday. Earlier in the day, authorities said one body had been found on the debris field. Three people were already confirmed dead on Saturday.

Crews were able to get to the soupy, tree-strewn area that was 15-feet deep in places Sunday after geologists flew over in a helicopter and determined it was safe enough for emergency responders and technical rescue personnel to search for possible survivors, Hots said.

He added that they did not search the entire debris field, only drier areas safe to traverse.

Both frequent, heavy rainfall and geography make the area prone to landslides. Less than a decade ago, another slide hit in the same general area. Geologists and other experts said the Stillaguamish River likely caused some erosion in the area that was carved by glaciers.

Authorities believe Saturday’s slide was caused by ground made unstable by recent heavy rainfall.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee described the scene as “a square mile of total devastation” after flying over the disaster area midday Sunday. He assured families that everything was being done to find their missing loved ones.

The slide blocked the North Fork of the Stillaguamish River, raising fears for a time of downstream flooding Saturday. But the water began to seep through the blockage Sunday, alleviating some concerns.

Bruce Blacker, who lives just west of the slide, doesn’t know the whereabouts of six neighbors. “It’s a very close-knit community,” Blacker said as he waited at an Arlington roadblock before troopers let him through.

Search-and-rescue help came from around the region, including the Washington State Patrol and the Army Corps of Engineers.

Dane Williams, 30, who lives a few miles from the mudslide, spent Saturday night at a Red Cross shelter at the Arlington school. He said he saw a few “pretty distraught” people at the shelter who didn’t know the fate of loved ones who live in the disaster area.

“It makes me want to cry,” Williams said.

———


Aircraft went down over southern Indian Ocean, PM says

(CNN) — Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 went down over the southern Indian Ocean, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said Monday, citing a new analysis of satellite data by a British satellite company and accident investigators.

The announcement appeared to rule out the possibility that anyone could have survived whatever happened to the aircraft, which vanished more than two weeks ago with 239 people aboard.

As Razak spoke, airline representatives met with family members in Beijing. “They have told us all lives are lost,” one relative of a missing passenger told CNN.

The developments happened the same day Australian officials announced they had spotted two objects in the southern Indian Ocean that could be related to the flight, which has been missing since March 8 with 239 people aboard.

One object is “a grey or green circular object,” and the other is “an orange rectangular object,” the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said.

The objects are the latest in a series of sightings, including “suspicious objects” reported earlier Monday by a Chinese military plane that was involved in search efforts in the same region, authorities said.

So far, nothing has been definitively linked to Flight 370.

Earlier, Hishammuddin Hussein, Malaysia’s acting transportation minister, said only that “at the moment, there are new leads but nothing conclusive.”

A reporter on board the Chinese plane for China’s official Xinhua news agency said the search team saw “two relatively big floating objects with many white smaller ones scattered within a radius of several kilometers,” the agency reported Monday.

The Chinese plane was flying at 33,000 feet on its way back to Australia’s west coast when it made the sighting, the Australian Maritime Safety Authority said.

But a U.S. Navy P-8 Poseidon aircraft, one of the military’s most sophisticated reconnaissance planes, that was tasked to investigate the objects was unable to find them, the authority said.

With the search in its third week, authorities have so far been unable to establish where exactly the missing plane is or why it flew off course from its planned journey from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

China has a particularly large stake in the search: Its citizens made up about two-thirds of the 227 passengers on the missing Boeing 777. Beijing has repeatedly called on Malaysian authorities, who are in charge of the overall search, to step up efforts to find the plane.

Malaysian and Australian authorities appeared to be more interested Monday in the two objects spotted by a Royal Australian Air Force P-3 Orion aircraft.

The Australian’s navy’s HMAS Success “is on scene and is attempting to locate the objects,” the Australian maritime authority said.

Hishammuddin said Australian authorities had said the objects could be retrieved “within the next few hours, or by tomorrow morning at the latest.”

Satellites focus search

Recent information from satellites identifying objects in the water that could be related to the plane has focused search efforts on an area roughly 1,500 miles southwest of the Australian city of Perth.

A total of 10 aircraft — from Australia, China the United States and Japan — were tasked with combing the search area Monday.

The aerial searches have been trained on the isolated part of ocean since last week, when Australia first announced that satellite imagery had detected possible objects that could be connected to the search.

Since then, China and France have said they also have satellite information pointing to floating debris in a similar area. The Chinese information came from images, and the French data came from satellite radar.

But Australian officials have repeatedly warned that the objects detected in satellite images may not turn out to be from the missing plane — they could be containers that have fallen off cargo ships, for example.

On Saturday, searchers found a wooden pallet as well as strapping belts, Australian authorities said. The use of wooden pallets is common in the airline industry, but also in the shipping industry.

Hishammuddin said Monday that Flight 370 was carrying wooden pallets, but that there was so far no evidence they are related to the ones sighted in the search area.

The investigation into the passenger jet’s disappearance has already produced a wealth of false leads and speculative theories. Previously, when the hunt was focused on the South China Sea near where the plane dropped off civilian radar, a number of sightings of debris proved to be unrelated to the search.

Plane said to have flown low

The sighting of the objects of interest by the Chinese plane came after a weekend during which other nuggets of information emerged about the movements of the errant jetliner on the night it vanished.

Military radar tracking shows that after making a sharp turn over the South China Sea, the plane changed altitude as it headed toward the Strait of Malacca, an official close to the investigation into the missing flight told CNN.

The plane flew as low as 12,000 feet at some point before it disappeared from radar, according to the official. It had reportedly been flying at a cruising altitude of 35,000 feet when contact was lost with air traffic control.

The sharp turn seemed to be intentional, the official said, because executing it would have taken the Boeing 777 two minutes — a time period during which the pilot or co-pilot could have sent an emergency signal if there had been a fire or other emergency on board.

Authorities say the plane didn’t send any emergency signals, though some analysts say it’s still unclear whether the pilots tried but weren’t able to communicate because of a catastrophic failure of the aircraft’s systems.

The official, who is not authorized to speak to the media, told CNN that the area the plane flew in after the turn is a heavily trafficked air corridor and that flying at 12,000 feet would have kept the jet well out of the way of that traffic.

Malaysia disputes reprogramming

Also over the weekend, Malaysian authorities said the last transmission from the missing aircraft’s reporting system showed it heading to Beijing — a revelation that appears to undercut the theory that someone reprogrammed the plane’s flight path before the co-pilot signed off with air traffic controllers for the last time.

That reduces, but doesn’t rule out, suspicions about foul play in the cockpit.

Last week, CNN and other news organizations, citing unnamed sources, reported that authorities believed someone had reprogrammed the aircraft’s flight computer before the sign-off.

CNN cited sources who believed the plane’s flight computer must have been reprogrammed because it flew directly over navigational way points. A plane controlled by a human probably would not have been so precise, the sources said.

Malaysian authorities never confirmed that account, saying last week that the plane’s “documented flight path” had not been altered.

On Sunday, they clarified that statement further, saying the plane’s automated data reporting system included no route changes in its last burst, sent at 1:07 a.m. — 12 minutes before the last voice communication with flight controllers.

Analysts are divided about what the latest information could mean. Some argue it’s a sign that mechanical failure sent the plane suddenly off course. Others say there are still too many unknowns to eliminate any possibilities.

CNN aviation analyst Miles O’Brien called the fresh details about the flight a “game changer.”

“Now we have no evidence the crew did anything wrong,” he said. “And in fact, now, we should be operating with the primary assumption being that something bad happened to that plane shortly after they said good night.”

If a crisis on board caused the plane to lose pressure, he said, pilots could have chosen to deliberately fly lower to save passengers.

“You want to get down to 10,000 feet, because that is when you don’t have to worry about pressurization. You have enough air in the atmosphere naturally to keep everybody alive,” he said. “So part of the procedure for a rapid decompression … it’s called a high dive, and you go as quickly as you can down that to that altitude.”

Authorities have said pilot Zaharie Ahmad Shah was highly experienced. On Monday, Malaysian authorities said Flight 370 was co-pilot Fariq Abdul Hamid’s sixth flight in a Boeing 777, and the first time when he was not traveling with an instructor pilot shadowing him.

“We do not see any problem with him,” said Malaysia Airlines CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya.


Hernandez missing since Oct. 9
Abby Hernandez

Courtesy Photo

NORTH CONWAY, N.H. — For the first time, friends of a missing North Conway teen are publicly pleading for the girl’s safe return.

Abigail ‘Abby’ Hernandez, 15, was last seen leaving Kennett High School in October.

A video and three letters were posted on BringAbbyHome.com, describing how much the teen is missed

“Ever since you left, a blanket of depression has covered everyone in the school,” one of the messages read.

“Wherever you are Abby, whatever you are doing, just know that we all love you and miss you so very much. I hope to hear very soon, that you have returned home safe and can’t wait to see you again,” another letter read.

The video message ends with a reminder about the $20,000 reward for information leading to Abby, as well as a number to call with information: 1-800-CALL-FBI.


Search and rescue crews from several countries were scrambling Saturday to locate a Malaysia Airlines plane with 239 people aboard, including three Americans, that disappeared after losing contact with air traffic control on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing.

The airline said the Boeing 777-200 “lost contact” with Subang Air Traffic Control at 2:40 a.m., two hours into the flight. The plane had been expected to land in Beijing at 6:30 a.m. Saturday.

China’s state-run news agency Xinhua reported the plane was lost in airspace controlled by Vietnam, and never made contact with Chinese air traffic controllers. There have been no reports of a plane crashing into Chinese waters, and China is assisting the airline in its search for the plane.

Vietnamese air force planes on Saturday spotted two large oil slicks in the area where the plane vanished in the first sign that the aircraft carrying 239 people on board, including two infants and 12 crew members, had crashed.

The slicks were each between 6 miles and 9 miles long. There was no confirmation that the slicks were related to the missing plane, but the statement said they were consistent with the kinds that would be produced by the two fuel tanks of a crashed jetliner.

The airline said in a statement that it is currently notifying next-of-kin about the situation. “Our thoughts and prayers are with all affected passengers and crew and their family members,” Malaysian Airlines CEO Ahmad Jauhari Yahya said.

Those aboard included 152 passengers from China, 38 from Malaysia, seven from Indonesia, six from Australia, five from India, three from the U.S., and others from France, New Zealand, Canada, Ukraine, Russia, Italy, Taiwan, the Netherlands and Austria.

The State Department confirmed that three Americans were aboard the jet.

The department says in a statement that officials from the U.S. Embassies in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and Beijing are in contact with families of the passengers. The department says it’s working to determine if other U.S. citizens may have been on the flight.

No additional information was released.

“We are extremely worried,” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi told reporters in Beijing. “We are doing all we can to get details. The news is very disturbing. We hope everyone on the plane is safe.”

Vietnamese website VN Express said a Vietnamese search and rescue official reported that signals from the plane were detected about 140 miles southwest of Vietnam’s southernmost Ca Mau province. A Vietnam rescue official later denied the report.

“We have been seeking but no signal from the plane yet,” Pham Hien, director of a Vietnam maritime search and rescue coordination center in Vung Tau, told Reuters.

Malaysian Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein also denied a Vietnamese state media report that the plane had crashed off south Vietnam, saying the government had not identified a crash scene. Asked whether terrorism was suspected, he said authorities had “no information but we are looking at all possibilities.”

Malaysian, Singaporean and Vietnamese search officials were coordinating operations. Lai Xuan Thanh, director of Vietnam’s civil aviation authority, said Vietnam had sent aircraft and ships scour 11,200-square-kilometer area where the plane was last known to be. Vietnamese fishermen in the area have been asked to report any suspected sign of the missing plane.

The plane “lost all contact and radar signal one minute before it entered Vietnam’s air traffic control,” Lt. Gen. Vo Van Tuan, deputy chief of staff of the Vietnamese army, said in a statement issued by the government.

More than 10 hours after last contact, officials from several countries were struggling to locate the plane. All countries in the possible flight path of the missing aircraft were performing a “communications and radio search,” said John Andrews, deputy chief of the Philippines’ civil aviation agency.

Xinhua reported that China has dispatched two maritime rescue ships to the South China Sea to help in the search and rescue efforts.

Malaysia Airlines said it is working with authorities who have activated a Search and Rescue team to locate the plane. The route would take the aircraft from Malaysia across to Vietnam and China.

The airline says the plane’s pilot is Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, a 53-year-old who has been with the airline for over 30 years. The plane’s first officer is Fariq Ab.Hamid, a 27-year-old who joined the airline in 2007. Both are Malaysians.

At Beijing’s airport, Zhai Le was waiting for her friends, a couple, who were on their way back to the Chinese capital on the flight. She said she was very concerned because she hadn’t been able to reach them.

At Beijing’s airport, authorities posted a notice asking relatives and friends of passengers to gather at a hotel about nine miles from the airport to wait for further information, and provided a shuttle bus service. A woman wept aboard the shuttle bus while saying on a mobile phone, “They want us to go to the hotel. It cannot be good!”

Relatives and friends of passengers were escorted into a private area at the Lido Hotel, and reporters were kept away. A man in a gray hooded sweatshirt later stormed out complaining about a lack of information. The man, who said he was a Beijing resident but declined to give his name, said he was anxious because his mother was on board the flight with a group of 10 tourists.

“We have been waiting for hours,” he said. “And there is still no verification.”

Malaysia Airlines has 15 Boeing 777-200 jets in its fleet of about 100 planes. The state-owned carrier last month reported its fourth straight quarterly loss.

The 777 had not had a fatal crash in its 20 year history until the Asiana crash in San Francisco in July 2013.

Boeing said on its Twitter account it is monitoring the situation, and “our thoughts are with everyone on board.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report


Patricia Girardi found safe

NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. — Police were searching for a Rhode Island woman who was reported missing after she left Boston’s Logan International Airport.

Patricia Girardi, 46, of North Kingstown, left Logan at 12:30 p.m. Thursday. Police said she was driving a black 2010 Cadillac CTS with New York plate FAC-6796.

Police said a cellphone track placed on her phone placed her near Hartford, Conn.

Girardi was found Friday in Connecticut, in good health, police said.


Adam Haley last seen one week ago

DUDLEY, Mass. — Dudley police said a 15-year-old boy reported missing has been found safe in Florida.

Adam Haley was last seen by his parents on Feb. 18., and the latest phone contact with him was via text message one day later, police said.

Police said there were various reports that he may have been in the area, or may have headed to an unknown location in Florida, North Carolina or Connecticut.

According to police, Haley was located in Live Oak, Fla., Monday evening.

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