Authorities have vowed to “close down” the family of missing actor Julian Sands, after further ground searches over the weekend turned up nothing.
The San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department said an impending storm in the region means search efforts will be delayed “for some time.”
The 65-year-old British actor was first reported missing in the Mounty Baldy area of the San Gabriel Mountains more than five weeks ago after failing to return from a hike.
A number of searches have already been undertaken by foot and by air, with state and federal agencies using special technology to help pinpoint a more precise location on which to focus their efforts.
A sheriff’s department spokesman told the Palestinian Authority news agency that ground searches were being carried out on Saturday (February 18), which had recently been hampered by poor mountain conditions.
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“On Feb. 18, more than 20 members of the Fontana Sheriff’s Station and West Valley Search and Rescue team conducted a ground search in the Mt Baldy area,” the spokesman said. “Crew members focused on the area where the California Highway Patrol’s Recco device struck a possible electronic device on Jan. 25.
“Unfortunately, nothing has been found that could lead to Sands’ discovery.
“As the impending storm approaches, shore searches for Sands will be delayed for some time.
“Our goal is to bring closure to the Sands family and when we can, we will try again.”
The sheriff’s department previously said it remained “hopeful” of finding the actor, but admitted the outcome of the search may now “not be what we would like.”
Three weeks ago, Sands’ hiking partner and friend Kevin Ryan told the PA that it was obvious “something’s gone wrong,” but that the actor’s advanced experience and skill “hopefully” would see his return safe and sound.
The actor’s family had previously praised the “heroic” efforts of the California authorities involved in the search and were “deeply moved” by the support they received.
“Our heartfelt thanks to the compassionate members of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department who are coordinating the search for our beloved Julian, not least the heroic search parties… who are braving harsh conditions on the ground and in the air to bring Julian at home,” the statement read.
“We are deeply touched by the outpouring of love and support.”
Sands is best known for his starring roles in films like Warlock, Room With A View and Leaving Las Vegas.
In television, he found fame with parts in Smallville and 24.
Additional reporting by agencies