More aerial and ground searches, but still no sign of missing woman
Jul 29, 2014
By Paul Daquilante
Of the News-Register
UPDATE / Friday, Aug. 1, 10:45 a.m.:
FRIDAY HARBOR, Washington — Jennifer Huston of Dundee, who has been missing for more than a week, may be in Washington's San Juan Islands, the Associated Press reported.
San Juan County Sheriff Rob Nou, a former sergeant with the Yamhill County Sheriff's Office, told Seattle television station KOMO that Oregon law enforcement officials told him Huston may be in the San Juans or on her way there.
A dispatcher said Friday morning she had not been found.
Huston's family said shee has spent time in the San Juans in the past.
Huston grew up in Tacoma and Gig Harbor and graduated from Gig Harbor High School.
— — —
UPDATE / Thursday, July 31, 7:45 p.m.:
Newberg-Dundee police, the Yamhill County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue Team and a private search group spent the day searching for Jennifer Huston, the missing Dundee mother, but turned up no new clues.
A flyover of rural Yamhill County is planned Friday, police said, but no more searches are planned after that at this point.
They said searchers combed northwest Yamhill County and the West Valley today. All parks and areas where vehicles are usually left by hikers have been investigated, they said.
Searches also have been conducted in Marion County and rural portions of Washington and Tillamook counties. Oregon State Police have covered major transportation routes and parks throughout the state.
Newberg Dundee police are still receiving tips and potential leads, which they are following up, they said.
— — —
UPDATE / Wednesday, July 31, 8 p.m.:
Searches by air, on the Willamette River and by road in rural Yamhill CountyWednesday yielded no new clues to the whereabouts of Jennifer Huston, 38, of Dundee, who hasn't been seen since last Thursday.
Newberg-Duindee police said family members organized a search effort by air Wednesday.
The Yamhill County Sheriff's Office searched the Willamette River from Dayton to Wilsonville, looking for places her Lexus SUV could have gone into the water.
Family members, friends and law enforcement officers have drive roads in the Gaston and Bald Peak areas.
However, no clues have been found.
Police said they've sent an updated bulletin asking other law enforcement agencies to be on the lookout for Huston or her vehicle in Alaska, California, Idaho, Oregon and Washington.
They plan more searches today and Friday, including an aerial search of the western and central parts of Yamhill County.
— — —
UPDATE / Wednesday, 8:30 a.m.:
Capt. Tim Svenson said Yamhill County Sheriff's Office detectives plan to meet with Newberg-Dundee police to map out a plan for searching rural areas of the county for missing 38-year-old Jennifer Huston of Dundee.
"It was reported that this is going to be a search and rescue effort, but that's not the case," Svenson said. "Our detectives are going to run a few roads, looking for the vehicle.
"They (Newberg-Dundee police) do not have any specific location they are focusing on, but there are a few possible areas she has been known to go, and they want us to drive those areas."
One is the Trask Mountain area, northwest of the Carlton and Yamhill, according to Svenson.
"Our depuuties are looking for the vehicle," Svenson said. "We're trying to get some air support. Flying over these areas gives you a better perspective. It's like looking for a needle in a haystack."
— — —
DUNDEE — Kallen Huston, the husband of missing stay-at-home mother Jennifer Huston of Dundee, who has been missing for almost a week, passed a polygraph examination, Newberg-Dundee police said Tuesday night.
The 38-year-old left her Dundee home about 5:45 p.m. last Thursday to run errands, her husband told police.
Video surveillance has captured her at three Newberg locations after she left home — withdrawing money from a bank ATM at about 6, gassing up her 1999 Lexus LX SUV at the Circle K station on Portland Road (Highway 99W) and purchasing Gatorade, trial mix and a less-than-lethal dosage of a sleeping aid at Rite Aid on North Springbrook Road. Huston appeared to be alone when she made each stop.
Detectives believe that she filled the tank on her vehicle while at the Circle K, but it is not known if she purchased fuel anywhere else.
The expected travelling range of the vehicle on a full tank is between 300 and 350 miles. Huston had several favorite places that she would visit with her family within that range of Newberg. There is a "U" shaped crack in the windshield on the passenger side of the vehicle and there is a Yakima ski rack mounted on the roof.
The mother of two young boys has not been seen or heard from since by family members or friends since setting out from home. She was reported missing by her husband at 5 a.m. Friday, Capt. Jeff Kosmicki of the Newberg-Dundee police said.
Her husband told police he was taking care of his boys in the early evening hours Thursday, started to become alarmed about 9 or 9:30 regarding why his wife had not returned home but chose not to call police until early the following morning.
Kosmicki said the five detectives working the case have no evidence to suggest foul play is involved, and they consider Huston a "missing and endangered" person.
“Obviously her leaving and not contacting anybody is suspicious in that regard, but we’re keeping all of our options open,” Kosmicki said.
Her cell phone is inactive, and the last communication originated in Newberg.
Detectives have worked to obtain phone records. Other than a "small amount of money" Kosmicki said Huston obtained from the ATM, there has been no activity on her credit card or bank accounts.
"The detectives have been on this from the beginning," Kosmicki said. "They spent Saturday and Sunday developing timelines, getting to know her habits.
"Kallen has been completely forthcoming," Kosmicki said. "He's done everything we've asked him to do. We have interviewed the 6-year-old child."
Members of the Huston family immediately began mounting an extensive social media campaign. The family established a "Find Jennifer Huston" Facebook page that had amassed more than 35,000 likes by Wednesday morning.
"We're investigating leads as they are coming in," said Kosmicki, who said the department has reached out to the Yamhill County Sheriff's Office for assistance. It's the first outside agency police have leaned on for help.
He said the department is doing the best possible job in an effort to locate Huston, but they will seek assistance if they feel that's necessary.
The vehicle Huston was last seen driving bears Oregon license plate WXH-011.
She is described as 5-foot-7, average build, blonde shoulder-length hair and blue eyes. She was wearing black-and-pink shoes and black yoga pants when she left home to run errands.
Kallen Huston was joined by other members of the family, including his in-laws, at the press briefing. He made a statement and took a few questions. His wife's parents declined to comment.
However, her father, Bill Turner of rural Clark County, Washington, said a family friend conducted an aerial search Sunday.
The Hustons have ties to the South Puget Sound area.
She grew up in Tacoma and Gig Harbor, graduating from Gig Harbor High School. He grew up in Lakewood, and they lived in Lakewood and DuPont before moving to Oregon about eight years ago.
"We still have a lot of ties to Gig Harbor," Kallen Huston said. "She still has friends that live there, and parents of friends who live there.
"We have friends everywhere," he said. "In Texas, in Japan, in Malaysia."
He expressed his gratitude to the communities of Dundee and Newberg for their support. He characterized the couple's neighbors and friends as "amazing," and said the family is appreciative of the support from so many people don't know and have never met.
"This is totally unlike her," he said. "She's a devoted mother. She's a good person. I think all of our friends would agree about that.
"We have a good, solid relationship. We're close to celebrating 10-year wedding anniversary, and we've know each other 17 years."
He said he doesn't believe his wife was stressed out any more or less than any other mother "with a full schedule" on a daily basis.
She had been experiencing headaches for about three days prior to disappearing, but was not scheduled to see a doctor, and was not on any medications at the time.
He encouraged Yamhill County residents and people living outside the area to watch for the vehicle his wife was last seen driving. It could be anywhere — off the road or behind a building. It is a large vehicle and should be easy to spot.
Huston said the family has a "lot of confidence" in the detectives working the case, and they are pleased with how it has been handled by the police.
Any tips or leads should be referred to lead Detective Ryan Simmons at 503-554-8954 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Newberg-Dundee Communications Center can be contacted at 503-583-8321, or individuals can call 911.
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