South Florida man missing for 22 years found dead in retention pond

Florida man

Google Earth leads to remains of missing Florida man in lake

William Earl Moldt, 40, disappeared in Wellington sometime after 11 p.m. on November 7, 1997.

The body has now been confirmed to be William Earl Moldt, who was reported missing on 8 November, 1997, after he failed to return from a night out in Lantana, Florida, when he was 40 years old.

Moldt, a 40-year-old mortgage broker, rarely drank, but he had chose to go out that evening in November 1997.

According to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System, Moldt left a nightclub alone around 11 the night before he was reported missing.

For 22 years, the whereabouts of the quiet, sandy-haired man known as Bill remained unknown.

They found him via technology that wasn't as developed back then: Google Earth and drones. Police noted that the vehicle was heavily calcified and appeared to have been in the water for a very long time, reports The Palm Beach Post.

'Amazingly, the vehicle had been plainly visible on a Google Earth satellite image of the area since 2007, but apparently no one had noticed it until 2019, when a property surveyor saw the auto while looking at Google Earth, ' Moldt's cold case listing in the Charley Project says.

According to the Charley Project, which keeps an online list of missing people, the vehicle was first spotted by someone looking at images on Google Earth.

That person called the current resident on Moon Bay Circle to tell him that there appeared to be a auto behind his home, deputies said in a Facebook post.

After they got the auto out, they found the skeletal remains of Mr Moldt inside.

Both the vehicle and the remains were sent to the Medical Examiner's Office for processing.

A report by the Charley Project, an online database of cold cases in the U.S., 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". The neighbour asked Fay whether he knew about it. When the drone confirmed that the vehicle was there, Fay called the sheriff's office, according to the report.

William Earl Moldt's auto is seen at the top of this Grand Isles community retention pond in Wellington 22 years after it plunged to the bottom in November 1997.

After the waterlogged auto was pulled from the pond, responding deputies discovered the skeletal remains inside.

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