Big Bear

Missing Firefighter May Have Been Picked Up, Investigators Continue Searching for Clues

Carlos Baltazar's car and backpack were discovered Sept. 20 on a mountain road northeast of Big Bear.

Carlos Baltazar
San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department

The search for a firefighter reported missing more than a week ago continued through the weekend, with investigators saying Monday that the firefighter may have been picked up near his vehicle by someone driving a Subaru.

Carlos Baltazar, who is part of the United States Forest Service Interagency Hotshot Crew, was reported missing Sept. 24 by family members. His car was found Sept. 20 on Highway 18 near Delta Avenue, northeast of Big Bear.

"Through investigation, deputies have learned that on September 20th, Carlos Baltazar may have been pick up near his vehicle on Hwy 18 and Delta Ave by someone driving a Subaru," the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said in a statement.

Baltazar, 35, was off duty at the time and not in the area of the El Dorado Fire in San Bernardino County.

HIs backpack was found about 75 yards from the car. K9 teams, bloodhounds a and sheriff's department aviation crews joined the search, but Baltazar has not been located. 

Authorities Monday were working to determine a new search area. Searchers have been wearing GPS devices, which will help teams determine which areas have already been searched. 

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