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Search Escalates For Ruch Woman

By Sanne Specht

Mail Tribune

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Department has ratcheted up its efforts to locate a missing Ruch woman, with search-and-rescue personnel conducting sweeps in the area of her home.

Stephanie Anne Warner, 43, who has been missing since the Fourth of July, is described as 5 feet 2 inches tall, weighing 135 pounds and having brown eyes and red hair.

She spent part of July 4 celebrating the national holiday in Ashland. Then she headed back to her Ruch home — but she has not been seen or heard from since, said Sgt. Shawn Richards, of the Jackson County Sheriff’s Department.

Based on conversations with Warner’s friends and family, and the fact that her vehicle was found at her home, police are fairly confident the woman made it back to Ruch, Richards said.

Her family called police after she failed to make contact with them, telling officers it was out of character for Warner to drop out of sight, Richards said.

Richards said there was no indication of forced entry or other foul play at Warner’s home. But Warner’s whereabouts remain an increasing concern to her family and to police, Richard said.

“We don’t have a clue as to where she is. That’s why we’re putting it out there to the public,” Richards said.

In addition to welfare checks by deputies, search-and-rescue crews searched areas near the missing woman’s home last week, he said.

On July 10, seven searchers using dogs looked for signs of Warner on her property and surrounding areas. Using an article that carried Warner’s scent, searchers used their specially trained scent hounds as well as cadaver dogs trained to detect the scent of human remains, he said.

“We found nothing,” Richards said.

On July 11 a second set of 16 searchers performed a grid search, walking closely together along various areas in the Applegate Valley. A third search was performed along the Applegate River using a helicopter, he said.

“We just wish we had something to go on,” Richards said.

Anyone with any information is asked to call the Jackson County Tip Line at 541-774-8333 or email

Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or email

This story originally appeared in Medford Mail Tribune.

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