Challenges and efforts for Serenity Dennard Search 5 months later

Local News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — Since February 3rd, law enforcement and volunteers have been searching for Serenity Dennard.

About 5 months ago 9-year-old Serenity Dennard disappeared from the Children’s Home Society. At the time extreme search efforts were being made which later became a recovery effort.

“After a few days it turned from a rescue to a recovery because of weather so no question, that from a search perspective it is a recovery,” Sheriff Thom said.

The weather has not been kind for Serenity’s search since she ran away.
From the ice and snow, to the extreme amount of rain and heat we are experiencing now, teams are facing major challenges.

“When you mix all those things together, the search for Serenity has been difficult all across the board because of the weather conditions and then you throw on top of that, we are walking up and down mountains,” Captain Harrison said.

There are 2 sides of this case. The search and the investigative side.

“We have had 182 leads and that encompasses about 15 states that we’ve followed up on. We’ve interviewed or had contact with about 410 individuals. We’ve followed up on a lot of different leads and have done 6 search warrants so we’ve had a very robust investigative effort to this along with the search effort,” Thom said.

The challenges have not stopped the search.
These maps demonstrate the searched areas from a month ago. Since then, the ground searchers and canine teams have covered much more space outside of the Black Hills Children’s Home Society.

“We’ve logged over 4 thousand miles in this forest. We have had over a thousand volunteers. Thousands and thousands of man hours and so our commitment is still there, just because it slows us down, it won’t stop us. We are committed to finding Serenity and we will do whatever it takes to find her,” Harrison said.

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