Lori HackingSALT LAKE CITY, Utah (AP)—More than 1,200 volunteers Tuesday scoured the steep terrain surrounding a park and canyon in a search for a pregnant woman who apparently vanished while jogging a day earlier.
Lori Kay Hacking, 27, left her Salt Lake home around daybreak Monday to run in the Memory Grove Park and City Creek Canyon area, Detective Dwayne Baird said. After she failed to show up at work later, her husband, Mark Hacking, called police, Baird said.
"I'm just so grateful they are coming to look for her," the woman's mother, Thelma Soares, said as volunteers fanned out along an eight-mile grid in the canyon directly east of the Utah Capitol.
Among the volunteers were relatives of Elizabeth Smart, who was allegedly kidnapped in 2002 by drifters and found with them nine months later in a Salt Lake suburb.
Baird said Lori Hacking was seen by a witness Monday morning when she was stretching near the park; he said her car was found near the front gates of the park.
Police first searched the area Monday using dogs and helicopters; SWAT team members with infrared binoculars were stationed above the canyon Monday night.
Besides being a popular place for runners and cyclers, City Creek Canyon is also home to transients who camp in the brush. Several transients were interviewed Monday as they left the canyon, which has been closed, Baird said.
Mark Hacking also was interviewed by the police in what Baird called routine questioning.
"It's important that he be cleared of any suspicion from the beginning," said his father, Doug Hacking.
Doug Hacking said the couple, married for nearly five years, were not having any marital problems. He said his daughter-in-law had learned Thursday she is five weeks pregnant, and the couple had planned to move next week to Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where Mark Hacking is to attend medical school.
This would explain why I've heard helicopters all day. Strangely enough, the couple of times I had my television on to local news, there was no mention of Hacking's disappearance nor of the ongoing search. I find it difficult to believe I managed to tune things out quite that well, even though I do often have the news on just for background noise, as it were.
Stranger still: I live in the Avenues district, and a couple hours ago I drove down B street, which is just one block from City Creek Canyon (Memory Grove is at the south end of the canyon). I saw no signs of unusual activity or anything else out of the ordinary, certainly not groups of searchers or any police cars anywhere. Granted, B Street is a block away from edge of City Creek Canyon, and perhaps the neighborhood search teams just weren't in the area of 9th and 8th Avenues and B Street when I looked toward the west, but I think it's strange I saw nothing of their presence at all.