Md. Police Use Thermal Imaging to Find Man

BALTIMORE, Md. --

A local family is breathing a sigh of relief after a 91-year-old man with dementia was found with the help of thermal imaging technology.

Police said the man was found last week after an hours-long search in a wooded area.

Louise Morris said she is the primary caretaker of her elderly parents, so when her father went missing near their Annapolis home at about 5 p.m., she was beside herself.

"You're looking at four hours in the dark, and the temperature was supposed to drop to freezing. We thought there was a good possibility of him freezing to death," Morris said."I think dementia was definitely a factor. He wouldn't have done it two years ago."

Anne Arundel County police said they tracked down Morris' father using a helicopter and infrared cameras.

"We searched an area that had not been previously searched. After about 20 minutes, we saw an individual who wasn't walking," said Cpl. Robert Townsend, of the Anne Arundel County Police Department.

"The terrain was such that it was a very hilly area, a very swampy area, probably about a 300-foot ravine. We had to get rescuers down there to him," said Sgt. Shannon Mack, also of the police department.

Although her father doesn't remember much of the rescue, Morris said her family is still grateful for their happy ending.

"We know we're pretty lucky that the police department had that helicopter with the infrared equipment so they could see him. That's what found him, that thermal imaging," Morris said.

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