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Redwine search focuses on reservoir

Dylan Redwine

By Shane Benjamin Herald staff writer

Investigators with the La Plata County Sheriff’s Office searched part of Vallecito Reservoir on Tuesday for new clues in the disappearance of Dylan Redwine, the teenage boy who went missing last November.

They had no new tips or discoveries; rather, they were checking an area where search dogs picked up a scent a few days ago, said Dan Bender spokesman for the Sheriff’s Office.

“We’re searching a specific area where we’ve had dog alerts,” Bender said. “With the snow gone and the ice gone, we’re able to search that area.”

But a slight rise in water level forced investigators to build a cofferdam around the area of interest. The dam was about 20 feet long and reached 10 feet into the water. The enclosure will be pumped today to allow investigators to better search the area.

A deputy planned to monitor the area overnight to make sure equipment was safe.

The cofferdam was constructed at the northeast edge of the reservoir with help from about a dozen members with the Upper Pine River Fire Protection District, three people with the Sheriff’s Office and two people with the La Plata County Road and Bridge Department.

“We have had alerts by dogs numerous times from November up until now,” Bender said. “We have pursued all of those as detailed as we could, and none of them have proved positive.”

Tuesday’s search was part of an ongoing effort by the Sheriff’s Office to investigate Redwine’s disappearance, Bender said. Since November, investigators have revisited the reservoir at least 15 times, he said. They have used search dogs, divers, boats equipped with sonar, helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft on multiple occasions.

“The shoreline is 12 miles around, so it’s a large area,” Bender said.

Investigators also recanvassed the Vallecito area during the last few days, he said.

“As we get new information on a possible lead, we’ve been following up on them, and we’ll continue to,” Bender said. “What we’re doing today is a part of that process.”

Redwine, who would be 14, was officially reported missing Nov. 19 by his mother, Elaine Redwine. He was staying with his father, Mark Redwine, who lives north of the reservoir.

The case has drawn national attention, including an appearance on the “Dr. Phil” show, in which the mother and father engaged in heated dialogue, with both accusing each other of being responsible for their son’s disappearance.

The two-part show ended with Mark Redwine refusing to take a polygraph test.

shane@durangoherald.com

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