Sheriff names 5 on missing person's list following Montecito-are - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Sheriff names 5 on missing person's list following Montecito-area mudslides

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The body of an 87-year-old man was found in his Montecito home Friday by search and rescue crews, raising the death toll following Tuesday morning’s mudslides to 18.

The latest victim has been identified as Joseph Francis Bleckle, one of six missing person’s cases that were active earlier in the day.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown made the announcement during Friday afternoon’s press conference, saying there are now five people reported missing.

They have been identified as:

  • Morgan Christina Corey, 25
  • John Jack Cantin, 17
  • Fabiola Benitez Calderon, 28
  • Pinit Sutthithepa  30
  • Lydia Sutthithepa, 2

Latest on victims, missing people of Montecito mudslides

Officials say primary searches of all affected homes have been completed and they are now moving forward with secondary searches.

As the search for anyone needing to be rescued or evacuated continues, mandatory evacuations remain in place.

Caltrans says Highway 101 will not reopen in the area on Monday as originally planned. A new re-opening date has not been announced.

Officials also said residents may hear loud noises along Highway 192/Toro Canyon as planned blasting operations would take place as part of the debris removal process.

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