Google Earth search leads to body of Florida man missing since 1997

A previous resident was doing a "Google search" on Google Earth in the Palm Beach area and noticed what appeared to be a vehicle in the pond behind a residence.
A previous resident was doing a "Google search" on Google Earth in the Palm Beach area and noticed what appeared to be a vehicle in the pond behind a residence.PHOTO: GOOGLE EARTH

WASHINGTON (DPA) - The remains of a Florida man who went missing over 20 years ago were found in a pond after being spotted on Google Earth, the authorities said on Thursday (Sept 12).

The body of William Moldt, who was reported missing on Nov 8, 1997, was recovered and positively identified on Tuesday, the Palm Beach Sheriff's Office (PBSO) said in a Facebook post.

"A previous resident living in Grand Isles (north of Miami) was doing a 'Google search' on Google Earth in the area and noticed what appeared to be a vehicle in the pond behind a residence," the PBSO said.

Police said that the individual contacted a current Palm Beach resident, who in turn used a drone to survey the pond behind his home. The PBSO said it was immediately contacted after the resident confirmed the sighting.

"The vehicle's exterior was heavily calcified and was obviously in the water for a significant amount of time. Upon removing the vehicle, skeleton remains were found inside," the Sheriff's office said.

The remains were identified after being processed by the Medical Examiner's Office, police added.