UPDATE: St. Joseph River search continues for missing woman

More Video...

South Bend, Ind. Police identified the woman missing after reportedly going into the St. Joseph River.

Search teams continue to look for 25-year-old Yolanda Anderson of South Bend in the water near the Colfax Street Bridge.

By 8:30 a.m., crews searching with sonar had located two things of interest in the water. When they went back to investigate, one of those things was gone. Officials believe it was likely debris or a log, but they continue to investigate.

Anderson was reportedly walking beside the river with some friends and family when she entered the water for an unknown reason.

One of the women with her told NewsCenter 16 Anderson got stuck in the current and, before they could help her, she'd been dragged north.

South Bend Fire’s water rescue team first responded to the 911 call around 1:30 a.m. Tuesday and then the DNR was called in to assist.

Anderson's cousin said that he doesn't believe Anderson went into the water for fun or leisure because she still had her phone and keys in her pocket. He believes something else went wrong.

However, investigators said they had no reason to suspect foul play and were continuing to talk to witnesses.

Indiana Conservation Officers are using “Side Scan Sonar” to search the river bottom. Divers and river rescue teams are also on scene.

Crews have decided brought in additional sonar boats, along with a drag bar. That device would be used to pull suspicious objects to the surface of the river. By Thursday night, search crews did not identify anything significant in the water.

Rain, current and the size of the person in the water factor into the distance they'd travel in the water. DNR officers said based on witness statements they drew the boundaries of the initial search.

Crews started near the Century Center, where friends say Anderson fell in, and continued downstream.

They plan to continue the search until they find Anderson, but if stormy weather becomes an issue, it could make things more difficult or even force them to suspend it.

Family and friends of Yolanda Anderson waiting around the river anxiously for the search crews to turn something up. Anderson's 5-year-old daughter told NewsCenter 16 she had the "best mom ever," and wanted rescuers to find her mom.

At around 6:00 p.m. Thursday, DNR Conservation Officers stopped their search and would regroup on Friday. They haven't given up hope, but want to rest and review their tactics before continuing the search.


Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
powered by Disqus
WNDU - Channel 16 54516 State Road 933 South Bend, IN 46637 Front Desk: 574-284-3000 Newsroom: 574-284-3016 Email: newscenter16@wndu.com
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 266189191 - wndu.com/a?a=266189191