NEW HOLLAND, Pa. — Crews are looking in a new location of Pennsylvania in hopes of getting some answers about a missing woman in Lancaster.
In New Holland, about 10 miles from where Linda Stoltzfoos went missing June 21, hundreds of volunteers have taken to the hills looking for the missing 18-year-old, or at least some clues.
“It’s a vast land,” said Trooper Kevin Kochman with Pennsylvania State Police. “There’s hills, mountains and cornfields that come off the mountains, so there’s a lot of terrain to get over.”
The 4,000 acre stretch was selected because of reports that Justo Smoker’s vehicle was there. Smoker was arrested last weekend on a charge of kidnapping Stoltzfoos.
The volunteers are all trained in search and rescue, and they’ve been told about extra precautions due to coronavirus.
“We try, but it is a little hard to do, but we are aware we have to try to keep our distance,” said Randy Nields, search and rescue with Bird in Hand Fire Company. “We just want to perform the search, but we still have that in the back of our mind.”
The technique of the search line actually works well for social distancing.
“It would be like 6 to 10 feet apart, maybe a little bit more, but close enough to walk at once,” he said.
Only people who are trained for searches like this are invited to help.
That’s because if they do find Linda, or a clue, that area immediately becomes a crime scene. The hope is it also will become much more than that.
The suspect was arrested at his work and is in the Lancaster County Prison.
The district attorney’s office said it needs more information from people about the car that’s a key piece of evidence.
Cox Media Group