Search grows for Brittanee Drexel

Myrlte Beach police and CUE Center searchers look for evidence in Brittanee Drexel case.

On Saturday, search efforts for missing spring breaker Brittanee Drexel grew to levels not seen since the 18-year-old vanished from Ocean Boulevard in April.

More than 100 search volunteers and law enforcement officials combed through hundreds of wooded acres near the Georgetown/Charleston County line, though no signs of Drexel were found.

Efforts are focused on that area because it's where detectives tracked Drexel's cell phone signals in the first few days of her disappearance.

The searchers scoured much of the same area in April, though the heat, thick growth and active wildlife made conditions less than ideal.

Saturday morning's shot of crisp, cool air was just what searchers had hoped for this time around. The cadaver dogs, mounted horse patrols and searchers are able to work better in cooler weather, said Monica Caison with the CUE Center for Missing Persons.

The group gathered around 8:30 Saturday morning for a debriefing from the "Incident Command Post," and they were then handed out specific search assignments.

The men and women, dogs, horse teams and ATV teams worked in groups of 8-10 as they worked areas from McClellanville to the North Santee Community in Georgetown County.

A central area of focus was along South Santee Road in the Collins Creek Community, and there were moments of piqued interest Saturday.

"We've had many articles found throughout the day which tells us that our searchers are working really hard and uncovering things," said Caison, but "at this point ... nothing fits Brittanee's case or any other missing persons from this area."

The searchers called it a night around 8:00 p.m., but things will ramp up again Sunday morning.

"We're just going to continue on and continue searching and hope that we'll get to the right place where we'll have some type of discovery," Caison said.

The search was organized by the CUE Center for Missing Persons and Myrtle Beach Police detectives who've worked the case since day one. The Georgetown and Charleston County Sheriff's offices provided additional logistical planning. Thornehill Farms on Higwhay 17 opened their farm for search teams to camp for the weekend.