Spain - Esther Dingley, from UK, missing in the Pyrenees, November 2020 #4

Discussion in 'Missing Persons Discussion' started by FrostOwl, Nov 29, 2020.

  1. IrisElizabeth

    IrisElizabeth Well-Known Member

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    I assumed it was a large well organised search but I hadn't realised quite the scale of it. Sorry to bring this up again but this makes DC's comments about the French SAR not using sniffer dogs even stranger to me. Everything in the dossier is clearly well thought out and included for a reason, and if someone who read it wasn't following this case as closely as we are, then they would assume that no dogs were used at all and that it perhaps wasn't as thorough a search as it could have been. In the dossier it is even written that 'Dan did offer clothes/samples to the French police so that they could do a forensic search or send in sniffer dogs' which strongly implies to the reader that the French police/SAR hadn't considered or done such a search which we know is not the case..
     


  2. Seni

    Seni Well-Known Member

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    Its thanks to your curiosity @IrisElizabeth that we snooped and got this info!

    I forgot to add that several Spanish tv and radio stations also issued alerts when ED went missing.

    RE - dossier, I suspect it was not 100% written by Dan. Also we know that he chose to search alone, not in coordination with the SAR. That is not a criticism either, but might involve a lack of communication.
     
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  3. Midwestmom2019

    Midwestmom2019 Well-Known Member

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    Have any of you ever seen a cop sleeping in his squad car? The guy probably had a long drive, finally arrived at the scene, started right in with looking at the interior, started taking notes, pictures, laid his head down for a quick break and poof, fell asleep.
     
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  4. RickshawFan

    RickshawFan Verified Outdoor Recreation Specialist

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    Much of the dossier pointedly addressed our conversations here, however.
     
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  5. RickshawFan

    RickshawFan Verified Outdoor Recreation Specialist

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    Lying on the bed to search underneath and in cushion cracks. I do it all the time.
    Pretend someone's lying there so you can intuit where they might have put something....
     
  6. Midwestmom2019

    Midwestmom2019 Well-Known Member

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    So who were you intuiting and what did they hide there? I’ve read from 40-46 this thread. Actually, 46-40. I got as far as she was meeting someone on the mountain...but I always like Mr. Occam the best.
    ETA: headliner.
     
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2021
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  7. Seni

    Seni Well-Known Member

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    Good luck to you!
     
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  8. Puzzles

    Puzzles Well-Known Member

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    Hi @Midwestmom2019

    I think you're fresh eyes viewing this particular thread. Just what we need, as we spin in rarely-widening circles.

    What do you imagine Mr. Occam would tell us about ED's disappearance?
     
  9. Midwestmom2019

    Midwestmom2019 Well-Known Member

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    No spoiler alert. Sorry. But I suspect that you know what Mr. Occam would tell us, don’t you?
     
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  10. Puzzles

    Puzzles Well-Known Member

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    ;)
    Chuckles at 'No spoiler alert."
    Ah yes, I've already spoken with Mr. Occam. He was very frank: told me I'd ignored my true vocation by not becoming a P.I. Said I would have made a fortune. Ah, well...;)
     
  11. RickshawFan

    RickshawFan Verified Outdoor Recreation Specialist

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    Some ideas:
    -a final note to loved ones
    -a map fragment
    -guidebook pages (you tear them out of the guidebook to save weight)
    -an inexplicable address or phone number
    -a weapon
    -a letter
    -a passport
    -in a drawer below, gear she might not have taken
    -porn is often kept there, but I doubt it was what they were after, lol
    -drugs, as a routine, but unlikely a factor here
     
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  12. PeggyHenry

    PeggyHenry Well-Known Member

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    Accident seems most likely ... but when local LE starts hinting at relationship problems, probably not in mountains, voluntary disappearance etc then it’s worth a discussion.
    28k squared was searched thoroughly by SAR in decent conditions and no traces. Hopefully the spring / summer searches will reveal more.
     
  13. Oraclle

    Oraclle Well-Known Member

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    Snipped for focus.

    I went back to re-read the dossier and Dan didn't say that they didn't use sniffer dogs, he just reports that he offered clothes and was told that they "didn't have that type of dog and/or it was too long afterwards."

    I'm pretty sure this has already been posted, but I can't put my hand on it so here's some info on sniffer dogs:

    Sniffer dogs can be tracking (a.k.a. trailing) or air scent dogs. Tracking dogs require clothing and a place to start, air scent dogs just find the nearest lost human. The oldest documented scent trail followed by a tracking dog was 13 days old, according to The Complete Bloodhound by Catherine Brey and Lena Reed.

    I imagine that SAR teams in the Pyrenees would find air-scent dogs more useful.


    Sources:
    National Search and Rescue Dog Association - Air scenting dogs (https://www.nsarda.org.uk/search-dogs/air-scenting-search-dogs/)
    National Search and Rescue Dog Association - Trailing dogs (https://www.nsarda.org.uk/search-dogs/scent-specific-trailing-search-dogs/)
    Missing Animal Response (How Long Can Scent Survive? - Missing Animal Response Network)

    Edit: Typo and wrong link
     
  14. Puzzles

    Puzzles Well-Known Member

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    A few interesting snippets about SAR dogs and how they’re trained in links below. The difference between Air Scent, Tracker and Trailing dogs is explained, and how Water Search dogs are used. I imagine the latter may be included in a Recovery Search of the lakes in the Spring.

    RickshawFan suggested upthread that French authorities may have declined DC’s offer of samples of Esther’s clothing to give to sniffer/tracker dogs
    as they’d be contaminated by DC’s scent.


    That idea is verified in a link included: "Family members SHOULD NOT handle belongings owned by the lost person. Once they do, the items are contaminated and cannot be used by a trailing dog.”


    What I was hoping to find in a google search was how the dogs might behave when they located evidence of where ED had been on the Pic, and how they would react should her trail abruptly end if she had fallen from it.

    I asked questions about the dogs’ possible behaviour upthread, and I’m still wondering if they indicated the route ED took when she left the Pic on 22/11, or could suggest she fell from it. The search was superbly executed, and I so wish I could know what – if any – clues were provided by the highly-trained dogs,

    “...Experts estimate that a single SAR dog can accomplish the work of 20 to 30 human searchers. It's not just about smell, either -- dogs' superior hearing and night vision also come into play. Time is always an issue in search and rescue."


    TRAILING DOGS

    The trailing dog is often referred to as a "tracking" dog, although "tracking" and "trailing" are not the same to the purist. The trailing dog is directed to find a specific person by following minute particles of human tissue or skin cells cast off by the person as he or she travels. These heavier-than-air particles, which contain this person's scent, will normally be close to the ground or on nearby foliage, so the trailing dog will frequently have its "nose the ground," unlike the air scent dog.

    A Bloodhound is typically trained for scent discrimination. Each dog is usually worked in a harness, on a leash, and given an uncontaminated scent article (such as a piece of clothing) belonging to the missing person. The dog follows that scent and no other. At times, the dog may track, following the person's footsteps, or air scent, and home in on the subject's scent.

    Field contamination (scent of others) should not affect his work.


    TRACKING DOG

    A tracking dog is trained to follow the path of a certain person. It physically tracks the path of the person, without relying on air scenting. This dog is usually worked in a harness and on leash. This type of dog is effective when pursuing an escaped criminal if no scent article is available. These dogs are also used successfully in search and rescue operations.

    WATER SEARCH DOG

    A water search dog is trained to detect human scent that is in or under the water, focusing on the scent of the bodily gases that rise up. As a team, the handler and dog usually work in a boat or along the shoreline. Because of currents and general changes in the water, it can be hard to pinpoint the location of a body. To enhance the chance of location, a diver should be ready to search as soon as the dog indicates. Additional teams, unaware of the previous teams' findings, work independently to indicate a location. This allows team members to determine the most likely location of the body.


    Dogs In Search And Rescue
    How Search-and-rescue Dogs Work
    Edited to enlarge font.
     
  15. Puzzles

    Puzzles Well-Known Member

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    Hi Oracile, I see we've been searching for the same information and posted close together.
     
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  16. RedHaus

    RedHaus Well-Known Member

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    All this great recent discussion about alpine SAR including their canine members, reminds me of this VLOG by ED and DC on Day 52 (Sept. 6, 2020) of their Via Alpina (Switzerland) trek together. They tell of an experience seeing a SAR team arrive by helicopter right near-by (7 people and 2 search dogs) to search for a missing man.
     
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  17. Puzzles

    Puzzles Well-Known Member

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    It's hard to watch this. I can't imagine the pain as Dan remembers or watches this video where his words foreshadow Esther's fate:
    "...If we got lost, if we were missing, people like that would stop what they were doing, and come looking for people like us, who get potentially get lost in the mountains... Reassuring, and humbling, and how impressed we were... "
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2021
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  18. Midwestmom2019

    Midwestmom2019 Well-Known Member

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    Maybe learning how to get lost, how to go missing and NOT GET FOUND.
     
  19. Puzzles

    Puzzles Well-Known Member

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    Hi @Midwestmom2019,

    I find your post interesting, especially the words you've chosen to capitalize.

    As some of us consider a voluntary disappearance by Esther as a valid explanation for why the intensive searches reportedly found no trace of her, I wonder if that's also your opinion.

    Will you please tell us more of what you ponder, or perhaps even a theory you've developed from your intuition +/or logical reasoning?
     
  20. Midwestmom2019

    Midwestmom2019 Well-Known Member

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    Hello, Puzzles. Your thoughts?
     
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