UPDATE: Search for missing Sudbury councillor continues

Photos: Greater Sudbury Police Det. Staff Sgt. Barry Ornella held a press conference yesterday to answer reporters’ questions about the search for missing city councillor Michael Vagnini. Police have yet to locate the missing man or his vehicle. Photo of Mike Vagnini also included from City of Sudbury and a generic version of his truck that police are looking for.

By Rosalind Russell – Sudbury Police say they have received a dozen tips so far from the public as they continue to search for missing Sudbury city councillor Michael Vagnini.

Vagnini, 62, was last seen driving a black 2021 Dodge Ram pickup truck in the area of Regional Road 55 and McCharles Lake Road the evening of Saturday, Jan. 27.

Police said the truck has damage to its back right tail light, and the licence plate number is BK22178.

In an in-person update to members of the media on Thursday, Det. Staff Sgt. Barry Ornella said police continue to search the densely wooded area around McCharles Lake.

“At this point we don’t rule out any possibility of where he might be,” Ornella said.

“We’ve been in touch with border services. We can account for his passport, so we can confidently say that we do not believe that he’s crossed out of Canada’s borders.”

In a previous update police said video from a business’ security camera spotted a similar black Dodge Ram pickup truck headed toward the community of Lively.

Ornella said police are now confident the vehicle was not Vagnini’s truck

Ornella said police have also been in contact with telecommunications providers and banks to track Vagnini’s possible location.

At this point we have not received any information back from those sources that we’re able to action at this time,” he said.

As a public figure, Ornella said Vagnini had several cell phones that police have accounted for.

“However, we have not ruled out that he does not have access to cellular devices at the time of his disappearance,” Ornella said.

He added police have also been in contact with other communities to be on the alert for Vagnini’s pickup truck, especially if it drives past an automatic licence plate reader.

Sudbury Police have been working with the Ontario Provincial Police on the search, but Ornella said weather conditions have not allowed them to use a search helicopter yet.

With better visibility forecast over the weekend, he said there’s a better chance a helicopter could be used to help with the search, especially over wooded areas and lakes.

Ornella said officers have been in constant contact with Vagnini’s family.

Police also set up a dedicated tip line for the Vagnini search, at 705-671-9171 ext. 2320, for information that is not time sensitive.

But Ornella said anyone who spots Vagnini, or has more urgent information to share, should call 911 instead.

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