After weeks without searching due to cold weather and snow, the Pennington County Sheriff's Office is planning a "large-scale search" for Serenity Dennard, the 9-year-old girl who has been missing since she ran away Feb. 3 from a residential youth facility in rural Pennington County.
The March 30 search will involve at least seven dogs and many of the agencies that previously assisted, the sheriff's office said in a news release. Sheriff Kevin Thom said a helicopter will be used and a plane may be brought in as well. If the weather turns bad on March 30, the search will be rescheduled to April 6 or 7.
Dennard ran away from the Black Hills Children's Home near Rockerville around 10:45 a.m. Feb. 3. After searching for her, staff called law enforcement at 12:26 p.m. About 355 people and 14 dogs from 34 agencies, plus a helicopter and plane, searched for Dennard on Feb. 3-5, Feb. 8-10 and Feb. 13.
A team of investigators has worked on the case each day since Dennard went missing and have searched the Children's Home, served search warrants, conducted more than 200 interviews and followed more than 50 leads.
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Another search organized by state Sen. Lynne DiSanto is planned for March 24.
"We are aware of the search being coordinated by Lynn DiSanto and have been in contact with her," Thom said. "We have provided instructions as to protocols to follow if Serenity is located. We will be available to assist if the need arises but are not involved in the coordination and organization of the search."
Serenity is white, 4 foot, 9 inches tall, 90-100 pounds and has blue eyes and shoulder length dark blonde hair. She was last seen wearing a long-sleeved gray shirt with flowers, blue jeans and snow boots.
The sheriff's office encourages anyone who lives in the Rockerville, Foster Gulch and Highway 16 area to search their property and outbuildings. Anyone who knows where Dennard may be should call the sheriff's office at 605-394-6115.