The RCMP's latest search for Courtney Struble’s remains took officers on an almost 50-kilometre journey down the Souris River on July 24.
The officers canoed from Estevan to Roche Percee and back. They combed the river for any clues on where Courtney’s body might be located. Corporal Larry Kurtenbach with the RCMP's Historical Case Unit said they had to call off the search due to darkness.
They will return to the river at some point to resume the search, Kurtenbach said.
“The river has a lot more challenges than we thought,” said Kurtenbach. “There's a lot of deadfall there. We did a lot of portaging, so we lost a lot of time due to the character of the river. We didn't get as far as we wanted to.”
RCMP posted highlights from the search on Twitter to raise awareness about the search for Courtney. They noted that they were looking for debris that could be evidence.
When Courtney disappeared in 2004, officers searched the Souris for her. The flood of 2011 might have relocated and exposed evidence that was previously buried.
“We are committed to determine exactly what happened to Courtney and find those responsible. We will never give up,” the RCMP said in one tweet.
They will also search ground water and other bodies of water for Courtney’s remains.
An aerial drone was deployed in early July as part of the search for Courtney. It was in the sky for about half of the day.
Posters that were released to the media in early July have been distributed through Canada Post, and the police will be approaching local business to hang the posters.
Kurtenbach said he can't comment on the search, or if they have found anything, since the investigation is ongoing. But they're continuing to ask people in the Estevan area to come forward with any information.
The RCMP remains confident that Courtney's remains are in the Estevan area.
Courtney Struble vanished in the early morning hours of July 9, 2004, while walking home from a friend’s place in the western outskirts of Estevan. This year marked the 10-year anniversary of her disappearance.
The RCMP’s Historical Case Unit took over the investigation of her disappearance in 2011, and has been treating her case as a homicide.
Anyone with information on her disappearance is asked to contact the Saskatchewan RCMP's Historical Case Unit or Crime Stoppers.