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  1. #31
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    Agreed. I am a big proponent of dogs in SAR work (and other fields as well), it is amazing the things they can do, but I also know their limitations.

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarx View Post
    All evidence from the dog in the Laci case was thrown out with the exception of what Trimble did at the Marina. Trimble went all over and in circles, to a winery and lost it so many times that it was not found to be credible. It sounds good on the news at first blush, but if you know the case it was a blunder and a hard hit for the credibility for trailing dogs.

    As for the oldest successful trail, it was Norman Wilson with his bloodhounds that found the bodies of the missing hikers some 13 days later. There are many places to find his name. I personally have it cited in a number of books I own.

    Yes, dogs are trained for different scents, this is a very important point. Bombs don't lose their scent, that is why they can be found decades later. Drugs keep their scent for years as well, hence why they can find drugs that haven't been touched for years. It takes years for decomposition to happen, again, why a cadaver dog can find a body that's been missing for years and years.
    Now, here is where it changes. Area search dogs are air scenting and picking up "the cone" of traces of human scent. This disappears very fast and they will have no success if the person isn't there as there is nothing for them to smell.
    Trailing dogs are scent specific looking for a particular person and are following tiny particles of human tissue and skin cells. These tiny skin cells (think micro dander) only have a limited shelf life. Also important is that sun and heat are the enemy and will greatly shorten the life of the trail.
    Understand all of the above. Wondering however if there were different dogs used for different purposes. Did I miss a link to what type of dogs were used and for what purpose? Because the reporting seems inaccurate. And I would hate for people in need to think that dogs are useless..... A narc dog is awesome for a narc situation. But sometimes, the narc hit you expected your dog to hit on, turns out to need an HRD dog, or a trailer. KWIM?

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarx View Post
    Jjenny,
    There is no certification for car trailing, because it hasn't been found to be reliable. It's been done in desperate times on fresh cases with so so results, the older the case the more dismal the results. Think about it, you are searching skin cells. When they are coming off the person on a trail they are free falling and plentiful. Now when you get in a car, you are not being hit by the air the same way and they have to get out of the vehicle (I'm betting she wasn't hanging her window out to aid in the scent distribution). The trail gets much weaker, and that would be a fresh trail. Now take that same weak trail and add 6 months to it and weather and such... We tried car trailing for Christina Williams a week after her abduction. Both dogs were able to get on the freeway with a direction of travel, one made it onto the exit where her body would later be found, but none of them could pick it up past the offramp, and that was only a week old. It's just not a good situation once they get in a car.
    There is no certification for "car trailing." And the "cone" for mantrailing is definately somewhat small. But if you have working dogs, you know that if you accidentally hit something in the road, or run over a dead animal or something in the road, or one dog happens to pee on a tire- they will sniff tires like crazy. They can be trained to recognize scent from tires and to disinguish the scent from the type of tire.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghostwheel View Post
    Depends. If they tracked her to the library area, it would indicate the area she was in. If they actually tracked her to a movie and book (first I heard of that, so I don't know how accurate it is), it would indicate she went that far alive and possibly willingly.

    Mind you, I'm not sure I believe all this, just saying that:
    If there is a report from August 2009 that states that these two dogs tracked Amber's scent to the Pala Library, and now her remains are found in the Pala area, less than 5 miles away, that is too weird to be a coincidence. Either the dogs really did some tracking, there was other information that lead the dog handlers to bring the dogs to Pala, the handlers are making up that they tracked to Pala (as in: it was never mentioned until now) or somebody found out the dogs tracked her to Pala, and moved the body to the area. If anyone else has some other reasons why this would not be a coincidence, I'd like some suggestions, because I do not believe:
    Dogs just happen to track to the same area where a body is found.
    Hikers happen upon a body that has been missing for a year when it has just come back into the public eye.

    I just don't. But I'm willing to be convinced, if someone has a good reason.

    I completely agree with you. If there was indeed a report indicating the dogs tracked Amber to Pala (regardless of where!) and that report was dated any time before "the tip" came in leading LE to Amber's remains then there are a very limited number of scenarios here to argue.
    Last edited by Voice4theSilent; 03-08-2010 at 11:29 PM.
    Where is James Perryman? http://www.websleuths.com/forums/sho...james+perryman

    "Truth is like the sun. You can shut it out for a time, but it ain’t goin’ away! ~ Elvis Presley


  5. #35
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    Absolutely different dogs are used for different purposes, a Narc dog won't find a bomb, or a person (unless it's been cross trained). Dogs are probably the single most useful tool in SAR work. There are some dogs that are cross trained for multiple disciplines, but most are specialist as they do a particular job best. The first dogs to be called out are the trailing and area search dogs, cadaver dogs will be called in when the search turns to or is believed to be a recovery mission.

    Did that help?

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Voice4theSilent View Post
    I completely agree with you. If there was indeed a report indicating the dogs tracked Amber to Pala (regardless of where!) and that report was dated any time before "the tip" came in leading LE to Amber's remains then there are a very limited number of scenarios here to argue.
    But the dogs would have to have been HAD to have been taken to a certain spot and put on a certain task. Am I completely misunderstanding?

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nancy2441 View Post
    This time should be about Amber and her family not about Michelle Bart.

    That's not to say the Escondido PD didn't make mistakes in this case. I just don't think Michelle Bart should be the one to point that out.
    I'm not familiar with Michelle Bart. Can you point me in a direction to read about her past case involvement or shall I just "goggle"?
    Last edited by Kimster; 03-09-2010 at 12:02 AM. Reason: edit quote
    "Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog, it's too dark to read."
    Groucho Marx

  8. #38
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    I went back onto another forum and read some of the info from last year on the dates when the dogs came in.
    Quoted from http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2...s-dog-missing/
    "On Wednesday, the dogs will be searching in areas Platt
    declined to specify and will have a dual purpose - to confirm whether
    Amber was actually at any of the places she may have been sighted and
    to develop new leads."

    It is possible that there were leads that lead them to Pala that they were trying to use the dog to follow up on. No information is revealed about what the dogs found at that time (August 2009).

    I suppose another theory is that she did in fact go off voluntarily with the tall skinny dark haired subject she was seen with by the school. She could have ended up in Pala with him on her own and then things went wrong.
    Last edited by sarx; 03-09-2010 at 01:07 AM.

  9. #39
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    Wise Old Owl is offline Retired WS Staff & Founding member of AFKBPOFPOPL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tink56 View Post
    I'm not familiar with Michelle Bart. Can you point me in a direction to read about her past case involvement or shall I just "goggle"?
    It seems Ms. Bart "inserted" herself - feet-first - right into the Caylee / Casey Anthony case. And a "fun time" was had by all - NOT!!!

    I can't imagine doing what, I guess, this woman does for a living. "What do you do for a living?"

    "Well, I go around the country and act as a spokesperson for family's who have lost or are missing a child!"

    huh?

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustToSeeYouSmile View Post
    But the dogs would have to have been HAD to have been taken to a certain spot and put on a certain task. Am I completely misunderstanding?
    Are you referring to them ending up in Pala specifically?

    Trailing dogs (which these were ) are given a "scent article" (an uncontaminated item of the missing person, piece of clothing, hairbrush, etc) and from that they follow that person's trail of sloughed off skin cells. They will ignore all other people and follow it as long as they can. (next is theoretical only for explaining) In Amber's case if they started from the school they would have headed out of that area, onto the freeway. Because they can't shut the freeway down they would have done exit hopping, getting off at each offramp and letting the dog try and find the scent again. In theory the dogs would have told the handlers that Pala was the place to get off and then once on more rural roads they would have followed the trail again all the way in to the library)


  11. #41
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    Correct. And no need to specify here.... We have a dozen at any given time.
    I'm just not clear on what the reporting is about the type of dogs used and when.

    Quote Originally Posted by sarx View Post
    Absolutely different dogs are used for different purposes, a Narc dog won't find a bomb, or a person (unless it's been cross trained). Dogs are probably the single most useful tool in SAR work. There are some dogs that are cross trained for multiple disciplines, but most are specialist as they do a particular job best. The first dogs to be called out are the trailing and area search dogs, cadaver dogs will be called in when the search turns to or is believed to be a recovery mission.

    Did that help?
    Last edited by JustToSeeYouSmile; 03-08-2010 at 11:59 PM.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarx View Post
    Are you referring to them ending up in Pala specifically?

    Trailing dogs (which these were ) are given a "scent article" (an uncontaminated item of the missing person, piece of clothing, hairbrush, etc) and from that they follow that person's trail of sloughed off skin cells. They will ignore all other people and follow it as long as they can. (next is theoretical only for explaining) In Amber's case if they started from the school they would have headed out of that area, onto the freeway. Because they can't shut the freeway down they would have done exit hopping, getting off at each offramp and letting the dog try and find the scent again. In theory the dogs would have told the handlers that Pala was the place to get off and then once on more rural roads they would have followed the trail again all the way in to the library)

    Yes that is what I am referring to.

  13. #43
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    The dogs that were paid and brought in August were trailing dogs.
    The dogs that tried again in November (I believe by LE) were also trailing dogs. To my knowledge those were the only two times dogs were used.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarx View Post
    The dogs that were paid and brought in August were trailing dogs.
    The dogs that tried again in November (I believe by LE) were also trailing dogs. To my knowledge those were the only two times dogs were used.
    Okay. Going to look up this clarification. Thanks for the info.

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by sarx View Post
    The dogs that were paid and brought in August were trailing dogs.
    The dogs that tried again in November (I believe by LE) were also trailing dogs. To my knowledge those were the only two times dogs were used.
    Do we have a source for the 'paid' aspect, besides the 'using donations' from the one article? Sometimes donations are donations-in-kind.

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