Deputies searching for a missing Los Angeles finance executive have completed their search of the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort and are now exploring elsewhere, officials said Thursday.
Dive teams and search dogs with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department have been scouring ponds and grounds of the Palm Desert hotel since the weekend in effort to find any evidence pointing them to the whereabouts of 33-year-old Omar Meza, who was last seen there on January 8 around 11 p.m.
Volunteers from Los Angeles, San Diego and right here in the Coachella valley also joined the effort Wednesday morning, gathering in the Ralph’s parking lot on Country Club Drive to organize a search party. Friends and family of Meza have been going door-to-door with flyers to make sure everyone is aware of his disappearance.
Meza’s wife Diane said law enforcement agencies, hospitals, jails, shelters and transit stations from the Coachella Valley to the U.S.-Mexico border have been alerted to be on the lookout for him as well.
Meza, a vice-president for AIG Financial Distributors, was in town for a work conference. His wife said he travels to the Coachella Valley every other month for work and knows the area well, but that he may be suffering from long-term effects of a serious car crash in 2014.
His co-workers told News Channel 3 and CBS Local 2 they last saw Meza leaving an Indian Wells restaurant. He told an Uber car service driver he wanted to go to the Marriott on Cook Street.
“We spoke on the phone he was going to be heading to his hotel room,” said Diane Meza.
He was actually staying at a smaller Marriott Residence Inn on Cook Street, but he got dropped off at the wrong hotel.
Diane Meza said she spoke to her husband around 11:20 p.m. Jan. 8, as he
left that dinner with colleagues; he said he would call her when he returned to his room but that call never came.
Meza was reported missing around midday Friday after he failed to show up for scheduled meetings that morning.
The search was taken up by the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department Saturday, Sheriff’s Sgt. Tom Brewster said. Desert Search and Rescue members with bloodhounds scoured the surrounding area without success, he said.
Meza is about 5 feet 10 inches and weighs 155 pounds. He was last seen wearing a gray suit, white shirt and blue tie.
Friends and family have started a Facebook page to help Find Omar Meza.
Anyone with information on Meza’s whereabouts is asked to call Palm
Desert sheriff’s deputies at (760) 836-1600, or the non-emergency dispatch
number at (760) 836-3215.