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PIA Press Release
2007/04/23

Missing American Peace Corps volunteer found dead

by Dan B. Codamon

BANAUE, Ifugao (23 April) -- The body of missing American Peace Corps volunteer Julia Campbell was discovered by combined forces of the Philippine Army, Philippine National Police, US Embassy personnel and tourist guides of this town at about 9:30 am today, April 18.

Police report said the cadaver was buried in a grave in a ravine below a pathway near Batad barangay proper where she reportedly bought a soft drink from a store.

American embassy personnel did not order the dead American exhumed until a forensic expect which they called from Japan arrives.

Police cordoned the area of the scene of the crime until the forensic expert comes to conduct an autopsy to determine the cause of death.

Foul play is being highly considered as the cause of death but this has still to be ascertained by a forensic expert.

Campbell, 40, was last seen on April 8 in barangay Batad, Banaue.

Ifugao police said they were aware only of the incident on April 13 when they were notified by their superiors from the Police National Headquarters in Camp Crame, Quezon City upon information given by the American Embassy in Manila.

On April 14, policemen from Banaue proceeded to Barangay Batad where Campbell allegedly proceeded on the evening of April 8 to verify and gather information but with negative result.

The police also started their search and rescue operation and established a command post in Banaue.

The following day, two Philippine Army helicopters with US Embassy personnel arrived to assist in the hunt but were still frustrated to locate the missing American.

A Crisis Management Office was then activated also in Banaue under the supervision of the Police Provincial Director to continue the search and rescue operation until the Peace Corps Volunteer was found.

On the other hand, Tourism Officer Dale Humiwat organized three teams of all registered tourist guides joined in the search and rescue mission accompanied by one policeman each covering the barangays of Batad, Cambulo and Pula of Banaue but their effort was also futile.

It was learned that Campbell made an appointment with a masseur in said place but did not arrive on the agreed time. She had a ticket for Manila for April 9. (PIA Ifugao) [top]

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