SDMRT 2018-14 Poway

SDMRT Operations Report 2018-14

Full Callout Poway, CA

Orlando Lugo

4 November 2018

SDMRT Responders: Rob Bair, Jesse Ma, Richard Yocum, Erin Rist, Lee Tomatsu, and TJ Tischer (en route to CP at time of 10-22); ITC: Richard Yocum

Other responding organizations: SDSDSAR (approx. 30, at least 1 dog team), SD County Sheriff personnel, ASTREA

Short Summary:

  • Type of callout: Full
  • In-County San Diego
  • Type of search: Search for elderly person with dementia and deafness
  • Environment: Urban, suburban, and undeveloped canyons
  • Location:
    • LKP at place of residence, 1310 Carriage Road, Apt 25, Poway, CA
    • CP initially at 12845 Poway Road, Poway, in strip mall, and then moved to 13100 Civic Center Drive, Poway, at Sheriff’s Poway Substation
    • Subject found sleeping without apparent injury along Interstate 15 1 mile south of Scripps Poway Parkway
  • Operational periods:
    • Earliest time of activity: Callout 0308 11/1/18, 10-22 at 0933 11/4/18
  • Information about the subject:
    • Number/names of subjects: 1 subject: Orlando Lugo
    • Age/Gender: 84-year-old male
    • Level of fitness and preparedness: Fitness level reported good for his age, known to start out walking fast and then tire considerably, prefers paved routes to off-route, not prepared for long duration outside or overnight
    • Mental status: Dementia, reportedly at least moderate severity, also deaf, relies on sign language
    • Injuries, if applicable: No prior injuries reported
    • How were they found: Subject located by ASTREA helicopter searching area
  • Any rescuers injured: None known
  • Aircraft used: ASTREA helicopter searching and delivering overhead PA

Descriptive Report

Missing subject is an 84-year-old man of Hispanic ethnicity, 5’8” 106 lbs, grey hair with 1” beard, probably wearing dark jacket with yellow stripe along zipper, dark blue Dickie pants, and tam hat. He has known dementia, at least moderately advanced, and is deaf, relying on sign language, the would reportedly be cooperative. He also reportedly has experienced several small strokes. He lives with one of his sons, who is also deaf.

He has walked off and gone missing several times in the past, usually when upset over something at home, and typically returns after about one hour. However, he has been missing long and has been found in the past in downtown San Diego, in Escondido, and walked along the 5 freeway and was found on a dirt hillside apparently on his way to a relative’s house at 10179 Empress Ave in Mira Mesa. On the previous evening he was upset about something with the soup his son prepared, and went to his bedroom. At approx.. 1900 hours the son went to his own bedroom to watch TV. When he checked on his dad a 2230 his was missing, and the front door was unlocked but closed. He reported the subject missing. He reportedly left home with no money or credit card and no phone of LifeAlert.

He has accessed MTS in the past with his MTS pass, but his departure may have put him out of the house after the last bus of the day. At BOLO was sent to both SDPD and MTS. ASTREA started overhead PAs. FLIR was used to search a wide area the vicinity of his residence and over a wider area, including the Carriage neighborhood, Poway Rd to 15, Scripps Ranch Blvd from Mira Mesa Blvd to Pomerado and into Poway, Empress area including Gold Coast, Black Mtn Blvd, and Mercy Rd to Scripps Poway Parkway. There was a possible, unconfirmed sighting of him walking south on Carriage Road just south of his residence at about 2230 hours.

The initial team was sent to interview the son as the RP, accomplished by lip reading and writing notes. A dog team reported that it was following scent south on Carriage to Oak Knoll. Other teams searched the surrounding neighborhoods on foot and by car. At approx. 0800, the CP was relocated and all teams except the dog team were called back to base to regroup, using the assumption that the subject was now “down” and no longer moving. SD Sheriff distributed a Critical Missing Person Alert to all cell phones registered in the area.

At approx. 0900, ASTREA located the subject lying along the 15 freeway, reportedly about 1 mile south of Scripps Poway Parkway. He was reportedly sleeping and had no apparently injuries. He was transported to Pomerado Hosp. for evaluation as a precaution. An APS referral was requested. The search was officially discontinued at 0933 hours.

Photo of Orlando Lugo from
Sheriff’s Critical Missing Person Alert

Map of Search Area

Lessons learned/ suggestions for future operations:

This dementia subject apparently walked about 6 miles, far more than is typically expected for a dementia subject. His route and where he was located was somewhat predictable based on a prior episode of him walking off.