Holloway Search Goes High-Tech

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Yes, by the time you read this, I will be on a plane... or even have landed in Washington, D.C. from New York City. I took an early plane back from New York because we have a special project Thursday that we need to do before the show so that we can air it tonight. I am meeting some colleagues at the airport in D.C. and then we are all jumping in a car to do this project. Yes, this is a tease, but read on....

Today the search for Natalee Holloway (search) in Aruba will be high-tech. The searchers will be using "ground penetrating radar" (search). If you are wondering what that is, tune in tonight to our show! We will show you what ground penetrating radar is and how it works. We are going to Virginia to tape a demonstration of "ground penetrating radar" this afternoon.

We hope we can get the tape back to the D.C. bureau in time to feed it to New York bureau so that it can air at 10 p.m. ET. (If we get hung up in traffic, we will probably air it Friday.) It may seem that "ground penetrating radar" is self-explanatory, but I am curious to see the equipment and how it works. I figure if I am curious, so are you. One of the great things about my job is that I get to see and learn so many new things... unfortunately it is almost always in connection with some tragedy.

I am curious what you think about the now retired police commissioner. It has been reported that he has some connection to Joran van der Sloot's (search) father. I have not been able to confirm a close relationship and I am not convinced there is one. I suspect they do know each other — Aruba is a small place. Here is what I do know: the now retired police commissioner arrested Paul van der Sloot — but did not release him. He detained him in the jail. Paul van der Sloot was released by a judge.

You might wonder why the hair on the duct tape is so important. If it is Natalee's, it is evidence tending to show she was the victim of foul play (not a "runaway.") The chief prosecutor must show a murder occurred in order to prosecute anyone for murder. At this point, while most people are very suspicious that Natalee was murdered, there still are legal proof requirements in court. It is not enough to say, in essence, "she isn't here so she must have been murdered." A prosecutor needs more evidence than that to prove a murder. A prosecutor must show a murder occurred... and then who did it. We expect the results from the DNA on the hair on the duct tape any day. Samples are being tested in both the U.S. and the Netherlands. You don't need a body to show a murder occurred — e.g. if there were a huge pool of Natalee's blood some place, that would be strong evidence of murder.

I could not access the show e-mail account, so only one e-mail today — one that I retrieved Wednesday when I was still in Washington, D.C.:

E-mail No. 1

Last night I heard several news reporters say they don't want Aruba to have a bad reputation as a result of Natalee's case. I couldn't disagree more. Why would anyone in their right mind ever send their child there again? Drinking and carousing around are not the ONLY ways to have a good time and to celebrate.
Lois Franklin
Charleston, IL

ANSWER: The world can be unsafe anyplace... I guess the lesson to be learned is that we need to be extra careful and we hope young people act wisely under all circumstances. Aruba is a beautiful place and safe —- this is tragic but not a usual occurrence there.

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