Search Near Statlu Lake Continues For Sophie Dowsley

Agassiz – JULY 29 UPDATE – RCMP has renewed their call for information on the whereabouts of Spohie Dowsley. While this is on, Former B.C. Hydro CEO Jessica McDonald is offering a $10,000 reward for information that leads to the safe return of missing Australian hiker Sophie Dowsley. Dowsley is a former BC Hydro employee. Both RCMP and McDonald emphasize that no one should put themselves in harms way in any search for the woman. Concern over searchers safety prompted McDonald to go to Twitter  hours later and withdraw the reward. Due to an overriding concern that anyone may put themselves in danger I have made the difficult decision to withdraw the reward.

JULY 23 UPDATE – Huffington Post Australia reports that the search for Sophie Dowsley has been called off. In their report – On Sunday night (AEST) Dowsley’s brother, Jamie Dowsley said police had made the decision to call off the search for his sister because there were “no plausible or conceivable areas (around Statlu Lake) left to search”.

In a Facebook statement – Jamie Dowsley expressed his family’s gratitude to police and the emergency services who risked their own lives searching the notoriously rugged region for Dowsley.

“The amount of support we have received is testament to the incredible person that Sophie is. We would also like to thank Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Dan Tehan MP who’s personal support and influence contributed to the extension of the search to find Sophie.

Jamie Dowsley added that as one of his sister’s personal items had been discovered below the waterfall, the water search would resume when conditions made it possible to do so.

“After visiting this area and gaining an understanding of the terrain and conditions our family fully accept this decision [to call off the police search],” he said.

“We understand that Sophie may never be found.”

Chilliwack SAR’s Dan McAuliffe told FVN that as of Saturday, they exhausted all the grids that they were searching. “It is rough and rugged country up there and if she (Jamie) had hiked out, there are many Forest Service Roads in the area , where she would have been able to flag down help. The search has now been officially suspended. This is not something that our SAR or any other crew likes to do.”

Chilliwack RCMP said in their release:

Following a final day of searching on July 22nd the Agassiz RCMP have suspended the search at Statlu Lake for Sophie Dowsley.  Dowsley and a friend were last seen by staff members at a business in the 100-block of Esplanade Avenue, Harrison Hot Springs, on July 8, 2017.

The pair were reported missing to the RCMP on July 10th and a missing persons’ investigation was launched.  A ground and air search was initiated on July 12th by the RCMP after the pair’s vehicle was located parked near a Statlu Lake hiking trail by Kent Harrison Search and Rescue (KHSAR).

Agassiz RCMP supported by KHSAR, Lower Mainland District Integrated Police Dog Service (PDS) the Lower Mainland District Emergency Response Team (ERT), RCMP aircraft, and Search and Rescue aircraft combed the region searching for the missing people.

On July 18th the RCMP Underwater Recovery Team was deployed after the friend’s body was located by ERT searchers.

The search which included resources from the Aggasiz RCMP supported by the Lower Mainland District Emergency Response Team, Lower Mainland District Integrated Police Dog Service with SAR teams from Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, Central Fraser Valley, and Chilliwack finished the search of the mountain on July 22nd .  

After a 10 day search of Statlu Lake and, exhausting all efforts to locate her, RCMP have suspended the search for Sophie Dowsley.

“A thorough ground and air search of the region has been conducted for Sophie. Although the initial land and air search is suspended our missing person investigation remains open,” says Corporal Mike Rail spokesperson for the UFVRD, “RCMP remain in close contact with her family”.

JULY 22 UPDATE –Search and Rescue (SAR) Teams from across the Fraser Valley are engaged in the Statlu Lake search as RCMP continue to look for Sophie Dowsley.

Aggasiz RCMP supported by the Lower Mainland District Emergency Response Team, Lower Mainland District Integrated Police Dog Service with SAR teams from Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, Central Fraser Valley, and Chilliwack carry on with the search.

JULY 19 UPDATE – One male victim has been located as Agassiz RCMP continue to search the Mount Statlu Lake region for a second missing person. That was Gregory James Tiffin.

The search was initiated on July 12, 2017 after a man and woman from Vancouver were reported missing to police.  The missing couple’s vehicle was located near a hiking trail at Statlu Lake by Kent Harrison Search and Rescue (KHSAR).   

Searchers from the Agassiz RCMP supported by KHSAR, the Lower Mainland Integrated Police Dog, Service (PDS), Lower Mainland Emergency Response Team (ERT), and aircraft from the RCMP and SAR combed the region where on July 18th a male victim was located. 

“All search resources remain engaged as we continue to look for the missing woman,” says Corporal Mike Rail spokesperson for the UFVRD.

JULY 15 UPDATE –  The Australian/Vancouver couple remain missing. Their truck was spotted on Wednesday, unoccupied at Statlu Lake near Chehalis. It’s a remote trail in the wilderness north of Chehalis Lake. Search crews found personal items near a waterfall and the concern is that one or both of them may have been swept downtstream.

JULY 11 ORIGINAL STORY – Agassiz RCMP needs your help in locating Gregory James Tiffin, 44, and Sophie Dowsley, 34, both of Vancouver.  The couple were last seen on July 8, 2017 by staff members of a business in the 100-Block Esplanade Avenue, Harrison Hot Springs. 

Gregory is described as:

 

·         Caucasian male

·         Height: 182 cm (6’)

·         Weight: 84 kgs (185 lbs)

·         Hair: Brown

·         Eyes: Green

Sophie is described as:

 

·         Caucasian female

·         Height: 170 cm (5’7”)

·         Weight: 65 kgs (143 lbs)

·         Hair: Blonde

·         Eyes: Blue

 

RCMP investigators believe Gregory and Sophie are driving in a black 2000 Chevy Silverado pickup and traveling in the Fraser Valley or Lower Mainland region.

 Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Gregory James Tiffin and Sophie Dowsley is urged to contact their local police agency or, should you wish to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS).

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