By Kevin O’Rourke
Montgomery County Police remain slightly optimistic that Jacob and Sarah Hoggle will be found alive and safe.
Captain Paul Starks of the MCPD told reporters outside District 5 Headquarters in Germantown that police search teams coordinated searches over 15 different areas using both air-scent and cadaver dogs. The searches were mostly in what Starks described as “wooded areas or areas that are not developed such as farmland and parkland in the upper part of Montgomery County mostly in the Clarksburg area.” The areas searched today were determined prior to Hoggle’s apprehension in Germantown last night.
Starks said that MCPD search teams plan to concentrate efforts in the Darnestown area and have identified eight search locations where investigators believe that Catherine Hoggle visited in recent days.
When asked if the police are considering the search for the Hoggle children as a rescue mission or a recover mission Starks replied, “We have got to be realistic here. There were two types of dogs, one that is trained to pick up on any human scent and another that is trained more specifically for cadavers.”
Earlier today police released a statement that the mother Catherine Hoggle, 27, who was captured last night after eluding police for the better part of this week, has indicated to detectives that the children are alive, at one point saying, the “kids are safe.” However, this statement has not been verified by police.
Starks would not say whether or not Hoggle, who is a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic who has been without medication for at least two weeks, was being cooperative with investigators as to the whereabouts or health of her two year-old Jacob and three year-old Sarah. “Investigators worked with her and her legal counsel throughout the day to try to obtain information and then confirm that information,” said Starks.
“Many times when we interview people who are under arrest,” said Starks, “their degree of credibility varies. If someone issues a statement -- that does not mean that we believe it. We have to check it out and verify it another way or through another source.”
Starks could not confirm if Hoggle had been given her medication or if that was making her more helpful. “Anyone in our custody would receive medication or any medical treatment if they needed it,” said Starks, but he would not say if Hoggle had been given her medication. “Because, here’s the question, when does it take effect? If she takes it now, does it do any good an hour from now if you’ve been off it for as much as she has been alleged to been off it? I don’t know. That is up to the people who are her advocates and people who have been medically trained to decide,” said Starks.
Starks said that all options are open investigators in terms of having family members -- including Troy Turner, the father of Jacob and Sarah – speak to her in an effort to locate the children, but he would not confirm whether or not such a meeting had taken place today.
This afternoon Hoggle was taken to Montgomery County Police Central Processing Unit, where she was booked and arraigned in front of a Montgomery County District Court Commissioner. She was fingerprinted, photographed, a statement of charges was read and the warrant was served. At that time, Hoggle was officially charged on two counts of child neglect. The Commissioner will then set bond and a court date will be set. As of 7:30 pm, on Saturday, Sept. 13, MCPD has not released bond or court date information.
As to Hoggle’s whereabouts since leaving the Chic-Fil-A restaurant on Aircraft Drive in Germantown on Monday afternoon, Starks would not release any further information saying only that Hoggle gave the appearance that she may have been living in streets or homeless for this week.
Starks confirmed that Hoggle had cut her hair while she was on-the-run from police in an effort the change her appearance and avoid detection by the public.
Hoggle was captured after a tip from the public at 11:18 pm on Friday night after he encountered a man in the hallway the Pinnacle apartment complex at the corner of Crystal Rock Drive and Century Boulevard and asked him for the time. He realized that the woman was Hoggle and quickly went back to his apartment and told his friend to call 911, while he went back out to attempt to keep track of Hoggle.
Officers quickly responded to the area and took Hoggle into custody. She was found less than 1,000 feet from where she gave the father of her children the slip on Monday and, less than 500 feet from District 5 police headquarters in Germantown.