Private investigator weighs in on month-old Andreen McDonald missing persons case

By Japhanie Gray - Reporter

SAN ANTONIO - After more than a month since Andreen McDonald’s disappearance, a private investigator is weighing in on the case with her experiences dealing with similar investigations.

Dottie Laster, who is not working with this case in particular, said she understands the challenges investigators in this case are facing.

“The hardest part about this particular case or one that drags on is that early on, you get facts and you try to work with them, and as you begin to exhaust those, you start to run out of options,” Laster said.

She said more than anything, it becomes torturous for families as time goes on.

“For the family, it gets worse. They can’t sleep, eat, drive or go to work, fearing that they may miss something or not get the answer they need. It is a painful situation," Laster said. "With investigators, you are busy trying to work on everything you have and check all of the boxes, but the worst thing is when you have nothing else to work with. It doesn’t mean you stop, but it gets really hard when you have nothing else to work with.”

The one thing she said she does know from her years of dealing with cases such as McDonald's is that communities do not give up.

“Heidi, from the Heidi Search Center — Heidi Seeman’s case was never solved, but people stop me almost every day and say, 'We still want to know what happened.' So it won’t go away. That is 27 years since Heidi was found deceased," Laster said.

She said she knows that is the same situation for McDonald's case.

“There is still this amazing drive of people who keep moving us forward, who keep holding the family up, who keep supporting their wish and absolute desire to know what happened," Laster said.

Laster said she wants nothing more than for someone with some kind of information to come forward immediately before time goes on too long.

“Whoever is sitting there on this information is nothing more than a child, a ridiculous, irresponsible child, and they need to let this family and her friends and the entire community take a sigh of relief," Laster said.

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