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Remains of person missing for 22 years discovered by man using Google Earth to check out old neighborhood

Remains of person missing for 22 years discovered by man using Google Earth to check out old neighborhood

William Moldt was reported missing from Lantana, Florida, on 7 November 1997

A disturbing image that was visible on Google Earth for years showed the resting place of a person who disappeared decades earlier.

William Moldt was reporting missing from Lanta, Florida, in November 1997 and his disappearance appeared to baffle police.

He was 40-years-old when he disappeared, and his girlfriend was expecting him to come home the night of his disappearance.

He was returning from a nightclub when he was last seen and called his girlfriend at around 9.30pm to tell her he would be home soon. This would be the last time she would speak to her partner.

After an agonizing two decades, Moldt’s remains were discovered in August 2019, which helped fill in some of the details of his missing person story.

William Moldt was reporting missing from Lanta, Florida in November 1997.
National Missing and Unidentified Persons System

22 years from his initial disappearance, police were called to reports of a car found in a pond in Moon Bay Circle, Wellington.

When the vehicle was pulled from the war, skeletal remains were found inside the car. After a week the remains were positively identified, and it was confirmed that they belonged to Moldt.

The vehicle was only identified after a person, who had been using Google Earth to check on their old neighborhood, spotted something that didn’t fit.

Moldt's remains were found in a submerged car, which was visible on Google Earth.
Google Earth

The manager of The Grand Isles housing development in Wellington, near Palm Beach, spotted what looked like a vehicle submerged in a pond on the site.

After police were called in to investigate, it was determined that the car had been there for quite some time due to the condition it was in.

The most haunting thing about the whole story is that the vehicle had been viewable on Google Earth since 2007 - it had just been unfortunate that nobody had noticed it sooner.

A report by the Charley Project, an online database of cold cases in the US, said the ‘vehicle had plainly [been] visible on a Google Earth satellite photo of the area since 2007, but apparently no-one had noticed it until 2019’.

Moldt’s disappearance had baffled police for decades.
Getty Stock Image

The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office spoke to the BBC in 2019 about the discovery of Moldt. They explained that they presumed Moldt would have lost control of his vehicle and driven into the pond.

However, they added that during the investigation into the disappearance there was ‘no evidence of that occurring', until recently, 'due to the shift of water, the car was not clearly visible'.

Police spokeswoman Therese Barbera admitted it was difficult to get a clear picture of what happened now.

“You can't determine what happened that many years ago, what transpired," she said. "All we know is that he went missing off the face of the Earth, and now he's been discovered.”

Featured Image Credit: Google Earth

Topics: News, US News