Search for missing woman was a learning experience for everyone - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Search for missing woman was a learning experience for everyone, instructor says

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The remains were found one mile from where 83-year-old Alma Lawson went missing in November. The remains were found one mile from where 83-year-old Alma Lawson went missing in November.

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – A body was discovered Friday near the railroad tracks in the Love Grove community, according to Wilmington Police. The remains were found one mile from where 83-year-old Alma Lawson went missing in November.

As part of a WPD-organized search, students from a basic law enforcement class at Cape Fear Community College found a personal item that may have belonged to Lawson.

That, in turn, led to other items being found down the hill, next to the railroad track.

From there, searchers saw a body in a ravine, partially submerged in water. They cut through thick vegetation to get to it.

One of the class instructors said Friday was a learning experience for everyone.

"There's no way you can ever, ever recreate that," said CFCC law enforcement instructor John Ward. "You can have simulators, you can have role play, but to be out there and to be partnered up with professional practitioners in the field, the detectives, the command staff, everything - there's nothing that will simulate that."

Lawson was reported missing by her son in November after she didn't return home from visiting a nearby friend.

An autopsy was scheduled for Monday, but the results have not yet been released.

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