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Lake County police dog helps locate missing, hypothermic woman in Lakemoor

Lake County Sheriff's K-9 Dax.
Lake County Sheriff's K-9 Dax.

A Volo woman was taken to the hospital after a Lake County police dog found her sleeping on the ground outside a Lakemoor business in 37-degree weather, officials said. The Lake County Sheriff’s K-9 team received a call at 11:20 p.m. Friday regarding an adult endangered missing woman in the 200 block of North Route 12, Volo, according to a news release.

The 51-year-old woman was arguing with a family member in a vehicle about an hour earlier, according to the release. She appeared to be experiencing a “severe mental crisis” when she exited the vehicle on Route 12. When the woman still hadn’t arrived home about one hour later, her family contacted the sheriff’s department. The temperature at the time was about 37 degrees and the woman was only wearing a sweatshirt, lightweight pants and shoes, according to the release.

Lake County Sheriff’s Deputy John Forlenza and his K-9 partner, Dax, arrived searched for two hours for the woman, who was eventually located sleeping outside, next to a business in the 31600 block of North Route 12, Lakemoor. Confused, and believed to have been suffering the initial stages of hypothermia, the woman was taken by ambulance to a local hospital for evaluation and treatment, the release stated.

“With the delay in reporting and initial uncertainty of the path taken by the female, this [track] proved to be extremely difficult – but that certainly didn’t stop Deputy Forlenza and K9 Dax,” Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg said in an official statement. “I have no doubt, if our K-9 Team didn’t locate this person, it is likely hypothermia would’ve set in, which could have resulted in her death.”

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