Sheriff's divers will search Laguna Lake for missing San Luis Obispo man

The Sheriff’s Department dive team is expected to search Laguna Lake today for George Carpenter, the missing San Luis Obispo man.

Carpenter, 74, was reported missing Dec. 23 after he took the family’s black Labrador retriever to Laguna Lake Park and didn’t return home.

His family, assisted by more than 200 community volunteers, last weekend searched probable areas he might have gone in the county, but were unable to find any new clues. A helicopter was deployed in the search, but visibility into the lake was hindered by its murkiness.

The family has asked that the lake be searched, hoping to rule it out as a possibility, said Beth Wonson, Carpenter’s daughter-in-law.

“We can’t discount the lake because it is where he would always go,” San Luis Obispo Detective Sue Mickel said. “It is the logical next step.”

The dive team will do what is called a “concentrated pattern” search of the lake, examining small sections of the lake at a time.

“Most of the waters of a confined basin like Laguna Lake are very murky and there is a lot of sediment,” said Rob Bryn, a spokesman for the Sheriff’s Department. “Because there is not a lot of clear water, much of the search will be done literally by the meticulous process of feeling their way through it.”