“What we are about to embark here will be a major ordeal.”

That’s how Woodward County Sheriff Les Morton opened Tuesday’s meeting on the upcoming search for the body of Logan Tucker.

The Sheriff met with law enforcement officials, representatives from companies that rely on heavy equipment and media members to vigorously begin plans for an excavation at the Woodward County Landfill in hopes of finding Logan Tucker, who has been missing since June 23, 2002. The boy was six at the time. Logan’s mother, Katherine Pollard, is charged with first-degree murder in the case.

Plans are under way to secure the equipment and supplies needed for an operation that could last several weeks. Officials are looking at an area about the size of a football field and probably at least 15 feet deep.

Officials are acting solely on a tip received after Pollard was arrested in northeastern Oklahoma and brought back to Woodward.

“We have an idea from the tip and the witness who provided it, to where we need to search,” said Morton. “We have had that area surveyed already and now we call upon the public to help provide everything from large dirt moving equipment to safety goggles, hard hats, and gloves - just to name a few.

“We do not have the budget to fund such a large scale search so we are calling on help from everyone in the community to provide supplies to donate toward the search.”

Representatives from the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, Oklahoma Department of Corrections, Woodward Police Department, and the sheriff’s department were all on hand and will all be key parts of the search.

“Those searching the area will be involved with law enforcement because of the dangers that can be found when looking and digging through a landfill like this,” Morton said. “We do not want volunteers from the community looking through the landfill because of the dangers that can occur with methane gas in the landfill. And law enforcement officers know what to do if we do have to treat this area as a crime scene.

“Right now we need from the community all of the other things including food and water.”

According to Morton the search will take place only during the day at first, but could turn into a 24-hour search if necessary.

Morton said an OSBI team is on emergency standby should the search area turn into a crime scene.

“We will operate as of right now only through the daylight hours but if it is needed we will start searching 24 hours,” said Morton. “We ask that everyone please stay away from the landfill if we have not asked you to be there, and please do not try to drive down through the landfill at any time.

“The area we will be searching will be marked off and we ask everyone in the community to allow the search to go as planned.”

An exact starting date has not been set for the operation, but Morton hopes the digging of test holes will begin later this week or early next week.

“. . . a lot of it depends on when we can get the necessary supplies needed to begin the search,” said Morton. “We will be digging several test holes very soon to begin to see how far down we need to dig to put us in the time frame when the body was reported to have been place in the landfill. We are and must be very diligent and very direct on the way the search is done.”

Officials said the landfill, which is located between Woodward and Mooreland, would continue to operate during the search.

The sheriff said you can contact the sheriff’s office to donate supplies at 580-256-3264.

Also to donate supplies to the search effort you may contact the American Red Cross at 580-256-3828.

Corporate sponsors or those wanting to donate money to the search effort may contact Matt Lehenbauer at 580-254-0896.

Lehenbauer said all money donated will go into an account that will be used to supply meals and buy equipment needed during the operation.

Part of Lehenbauer’s work as City/County Emergency Management Director is to arrange for supplies and needed food and water for emergency workers at the site.

Lehenbauer said right now he would be looking to provide lunch every day for 25 workers. That number could go up if the decision is eventually made to dig 24 hours.

Safety items, especially the proper boots, goggles, gloves, coveralls, masks and other similar items will also be critical needs, Lehenbauer said.

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