The search for missing Indiana University student Lauren Spierer is in its second day at a Vigo county landfill. Critics are asking why it took so long for authorities to broaden their search to include the dump.
Bloomington Police Captain Joe Qualters says the search efforts at the landfill are the second phase of the Spierer investigation. He says not long after Spierer went missing in June, police took the necessary efforts to ensure Bloomington garbage at the landfill was sequestered and cordoned off.
“We’re hopeful that we find some tangible evidence from the effort going on there,” Qualters said. “This is something that has been worked on for quite some time mostly behind the scenes.”
The police department has faced criticism for waiting so long to search the landfill, but Qualters said there is a great deal of effort that goes into such a search including personnel, safety equipment and transportation.
“This isn’t a matter of one day you decide this will be a good idea,” he said. “There is a great deal of planning that goes into that. We had to capitalize on a lot of agencies.”
Qualters adds it would have been premature to pull resources away from the land search and focus on the landfill in the early days after Spierer disappeared.
“I think we’re aware that there were certainly critics out there wondering why we didn’t do it immediately,” he said. “The decision was made we would wait for the land search effort to conclude. We were in the planning phase for the next stage of the operation, which was considering whether or not that landfill issue needed to be addressed.”
The search could take two weeks.