Image: trueStatement: “It’s a very low percentage,” Pam Medhurst said in a Q&A with us published Friday about how often the Sheriff’s Department fails to resolve a search and rescue.

Determination: True

Analysis: More than 200 people consistently volunteer for the Sheriff’s Department when the call comes in that someone is lost or missing in San Diego County. On Thursday, I interviewed one of those people, Pam Medhurst, about her experiences as the K-9 unit’s leader.

During the interview, Medhurst told me that the search and rescue crew rarely fails to find people. The outcome isn’t always positive or immediate, but they eventually get family or friends an answer to the haunting question, “Where could they have possibly gone?”

And in fact, Medhurst’s estimate measures up to the department’s statistics. Since 1963, its Search and Rescue Bureau reports a 98 percent success rate. Just to be clear, “success” doesn’t necessarily mean the person was found safe and sound. It just means the department solved the mystery with a definitive answer.

Nonetheless, since this statement checks out, we’ve called it true.

If you disagree with our determination or analysis, please express your thoughts in the comments section of this blog post. Explain your reasoning.

You can also email new Fact Check suggestions to What claim should we explore next?

Please contact Keegan Kyle directly at or 619.550.5668 and follow him on Twitter:

Leave a comment

We expect all commenters to be constructive and civil. We reserve the right to delete comments without explanation. You are welcome to flag comments to us. You are welcome to submit an opinion piece for our editors to review.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.