Troopers search Sterling woods for missing man

Posted: Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Alaska State Troopers resumed their search of the Sterling woods Tuesday for a 49-year-old man missing since early Sunday.

James "Jim" Stenglein was last seen around midnight Saturday while visiting his sister, Trish Sutton and her husband Brent, in their home at 38231 Sterling Highway, across from south Robinson Loop near Mile 88.

Stenglein told his sister he was going to bed and when the Suttons awoke Sunday morning, he was gone, said Brent Sutton's mother, Beverly Rowe, on Tuesday.

"His car was still there at the house. His billfold and his cell phone were in the house," Rowe said. His car keys were also there.

"It's not like him. He's never done anything like this," she said.

Trooper "E" Detachment Commander, Capt. Peter Mlynarik, said troopers searched on the ground around the Sutton home Monday with a canine unit brought up from Anchor Point. No foul play is suspected.

"Our helicopter searched the area from the air (Monday) evening," he said. On Tuesday, one or two trooper search dogs were being flown in from Anchorage to continue the ground search. Mlynarik said the search area may be expanded. While it is here, the trooper helicopter will once again search the area from the air.

Stenglein, who works as a mechanic for the troopers, is in the process of being transferred from Dutch Harbor to Seward, according to Rowe. His address is still listed as Dutch Harbor and troopers there have checked the residence without finding him.

Mlynarik said troopers looked at (commercial) flights out of Kenai to see if Stenglein might have flown somewhere, but determined he was not on any flights.

When last seen, Stenglein was wearing a gray vest over a long-sleeve shirt, and was wearing gray pants. He is described as being 6 feet tall, 180 pounds, with brown hair, blue eyes and a mustache.

Stenglein, whose wife died several years ago, lives alone. He has a son, Joseph, attending college in Colorado.

People who may have seen Stenglein or who have any information about his disappearance, are asked to call troopers in Soldotna at 262-4453.

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