Reservoirs, mine shafts search sites

archive_import

By AMY LINDBLOM

Maps cover Modesto Police Sgt. Ron Cloward's desk. They are spread out on a large table in his office, not only showing streets and highways, but detailing the old mines in Calaveras, Tuolumne and Mariposa counties.

"There are 1,300 mines in Calaveras alone," Cloward said, his voice giving away the frustration he feels after searching fruitlessly for a missing pregnant Modesto woman who vanished Christmas Eve.

Laci Peterson, 27, could be in any one of those mines.

She could be at the bottom of a lake, in an old barn or in the ocean, Cloward said.

"We have received 2,121 calls so far about Laci, and we are following up on them, but we don't know where she is," Cloward said late Tuesday afternoon. "We are geared up for the worst that she met with foul play and she is probably not going to be found alive but we have to keep focusing on finding Laci."

Laci Peterson was eight and a half months pregnant when she disappeared. Her husband, Scott, told investigators he last saw his wife about 9:30 a.m., right before he left to go fishing at the Berkeley Marina.

When he returned home about 6:30 that night, his wife was gone. He called 911. Ever since, investigators have been trying to corroborate his story to clear him as a suspect.

The woman's disappearance has drawn nationwide attention.

Cloward, who is heading the search effort, said his officers searched Stanislaus County and exhausted leads there. Now the hunt has branched to neighboring counties.

"We have been using dogs, and if they take us anywhere we will follow up on leads," Cloward said.

He refused to comment on whether a cadaver dog alerted searchers to something in Tulloch Reservoir, but that is where divers have been searching since Sunday. The three-day effort concluded about 3 p.m. Tuesday.

All that was found were a camera lens and "a bunch of padlocks," one diver said. Another diver suffered a burst eardrum in the search, Cloward said.

11703883
The Union Democrat
This image is copyrighted.

Reach all of Sonora, Calaveras County, Tuolumne, Angels Camp, Twain Harte, & Jamestown with your items to sell.

Ads appear Online and in Print

View Classifieds Place an Ad

Connect with The Union Democrat

Union Democrat Newsstand

Sunday February 26, 2017

Read digital interactive editions of our publications

Read Today's Edition Take A Tour

More Publications by The Union Democrat

View All Publications
McClintock town hall draws large, divided crowd

02/22/2017

There was patriotic singing, chanting and sign waving inside the packed 569-seat ... more

Diverse views outside McClintock Town Hall

02/22/2017

They came with signs and flags and at least one mask, expressing ... more

County appoints working group on marijuana regulations

02/22/2017

What do two county supervisors, a former California Highway Patrol commander, a ... more

Weather takes a swipe at Groveland business

02/23/2017

Recent road damage, rockfall, slides and Merced River flooding in January have ... more

McClintock supporters, protesters call for peaceful event

02/20/2017

With people speculating about what could become the largest protest Sonora has ... more