Bellingham, Wash. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Air & Marine (OAM) marine interdiction agents on border security patrol discovered the body of an unidentified woman along the shore of Bellingham Bay, near Cornwall and Pine Streets on Saturday, October 2, at 9 a.m. The agents were headed out of the Bellingham harbor on a routine security patrol of the San Juan Islands and decided to assist local law enforcement authorities in the search for missing Western Washington University student, 18-year-old freshman Dwight Clark. Clark remains missing.
The agents were operating a 33-foot Secure-Around-Flotation-Equipped (SAFE) boat in the shoreline area close to where the student was last believed to be. Crewmembers used Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) technology on the vessel to better observe areas too shallow for the vessel to enter. A thermal heat signature was observed on the beach. Two marine interdiction agents were deployed onto the shoreline where a woman's body was discovered. Agents secured the scene and immediately notified Bellingham police and paramedics who responded to the scene. The woman's identity has not yet been revealed by local authorities.
"We are saddened by this discovery but glad to be able to assist the Bellingham Police Department," said James Warfield, director marine operations. "CBP's border security marine patrols in the Pacific Northwest continue to assist local law enforcement agencies throughout our various communities."
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.