Missing Cromwell girl located in Haast

Wednesday 14 January 2009, 7:56AM
By New Zealand Police
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Jessica ROBERTS, missing from Cromwell since the 3rd January 2009, has been located near Haast township.
Jessica's vehicle was located at about 6.00pm tonight by a couple of tourists who had gone for a walk from Haast. When they returned to their accommodation they saw the missing persons notice regarding Jessica and notified Police.
The vehicle had become stuck at the end of a track which leads from State Highway Six near Haast township to an abandoned quarry near the Haast River. The vehicle was about 600 metres from the highway.
While Constable MANERA of Haast Police was investigating the vehicle he
heard a voice in an area of dense bush and scrub. As a result he located Jessica about 100 metres from her vehicle.
At this time it is not known exactly how long Jessica had been at this location although it was obvious Jessica had been in the outdoors without food for a number of nights. Considering her ordeal she is in remarkably good shape.
Volunteers from the Haast Rural Fire Party and St Johns Ambulance assisted Police to chainsaw a track to Jessica's location so she could be carried back to the road by stretcher. She was taken to Haast township and treated by the Haast Rural Nurse.
Jessica's condition is described as stable. She is currently being transported to Dunedin Hospital by ambulance for further treatment.
The Highways on the West Coast had previously been searched by Police, Search and Rescue Volunteers and members of her family. This included the Highways being searched from the air, by driving and by walking high risk sections. A number of side roads between Whataroa and Haast had been searched but the track where Jessica's vehicle was located was not searched.
Jessica's family is understandably ecstatic that she has been located safe and well.

Tony LeSueur
Hokitika Police