Sweetwater Co Sheriff asks for volunteers in search for missing Rock Springs man
by Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office media release
November 30, 2010
(Rock Springs, Wyoming - November 30, 2010, 6:29PM) The Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office is calling for volunteers for the next phase of the search for a missing Rock Springs man.
Jean Baptiste Soule, 72, a retired miner and avid hiker, was seen leaving his home at around 8:00 AM on Saturday, November 20, for his daily walk.
Soule customarily hiked White Mountain, and was believed headed in that direction.
When he had not returned home by late afternoon, his family reported him missing to the Rock Springs Police Department.
A witness reported seeing Soule at around 5:00 PM not far from his home. The witness told police that he appeared exhausted.
A subsequent five-day search of residential areas in Rock Springs, the slopes of White Mountain, and open areas near the Rock Springs Family Recreation Center conducted by law enforcement officers, firefighters, Sweetwater County Search & Rescue personnel with search dogs, a bloodhound from Fremont County, and many individual volunteers produced negative results.
The Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office and the Rock Springs Police Department have received and followed up numerous leads called in since the search, though none have yet proved productive.
Sheriff Rich Haskell said the Sheriff’s Office is organizing an on-foot search that will focus on the open ground between the Recreation Center and the base of White Mountain scheduled to begin Saturday morning.
"How much ground we’ll be able to cover will depend on the number of volunteers participating in the search," he said.
Those working the search effort will include County Search & Rescue personnel, Sweetwater County deputies, Rock Springs Police Officers, firefighters from Sweetwater County Fire District #1, Sweetwater County Emergency Management staff, and the called-for volunteers.
Haskell emphasized that the search area has been clearly defined and will be covered by searchers on foot, with no vehicles, including four-wheelers, involved.
"We’re planning a eyes-on-the-ground, meticulous search," he said. "Saturday’s operation will involve a hike in the snow over open ground of just under a mile. Teams of volunteers will be led by Search & Rescue specialists with radios and GPS units. Those who consider volunteering to participate in the search are asked to take into consideration the cold weather, inclement conditions, their level of physical fitness and abilities, and the absolute necessity of effective cold-weather clothing and footwear."
Those interested in helping with the search are encouraged to call the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office.
According to Haskell, an Incident Command Post will be set up for the search on Saturday, December 4th, at the Sweetwater Trap Club at 409 Gookin-White Mountain Road, just west of Rock Springs. All searchers will meet there for an 8:00 AM briefing, after which they will be transported to the search area in a bus provided by Sweetwater County School District #1.
Officials continue to ask that anyone with information on the case contact the Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office or the Rock Springs Police Department.
When last seen, Soule was wearing a black winter coat with red or red plaid vertical stripes on the front, gray or blue pants, and a black beret.
For more information contact Detective Dick Blust, Jr., Public Information Officer Sweetwater County Sheriff’s Office, Green River / Rock Springs, Wyoming, (307) 922-5294 or 307-350-4016, email@example.com / firstname.lastname@example.org
SWEETWATER COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE
GREEN RIVER / ROCK SPRINGS, WYOMING
(307) 872-3870 / (307) 922-5321