After two decades the mystery of William Moldt’s disappearance has finally been put to rest thanks to Google Earth. His submerged vehicle was spotted in a man-made lake by an individual who was looking at their former Florida home and neighbourhood in Moon Bay Circle using Google satellite images.
The lake where the car was discovered is located directly behind the man’s former property. After zooming in on the image to confirm it was a car, the former resident of Grand Isles contacted the current homeowner, who used a drone to then confirm it was indeed a submerged car.
The authorities were summoned and the car with the Moldt’s skeletal remains was recovered. According to a report by the Charley Project, an online database of cold cases in the US, the “vehicle had [been] visible on a Google Earth satellite photo of the area since 2007, but apparently no-one had noticed it until 2019.”
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In 1997, the 40-year-old Moldt went missing after leaving a night club in Lantana, Florida. Police were notified and a missing person case was launched, however, the case quickly went cold. Moldt’s next of kin have been informed of the discovery.
Google Earth is a program renders a 3D representation of Earth-based primarily on satellite imagery. Users are able to see cities and landscapes around the globe in great detail using either a smartphone, computer or tablet.
It has also been responsible for a number of discoveries thanks to its satellite images, including ancient skeletons millions of years old that proved the existence of another species of human ancestors. However, some view the tech as a threat to privacy and national security, which has led to Google Earth being banned in some places, including North Korea.
Earlier this year, Taiwanese official raised concerns that Google Earth’s 3D imagery exposed some of its patriot missile sites – subsequently, Google confirmed it would be removing all of its 3D imagery from Taiwan.