Pittsburgh police dogs used in Bloomfield missing person case

Pittsburgh police detectives and their crime dogs searched a wooded knoll near Carnegie on Saturday night, their latest attempt to trace the last whereabouts of an unemployed Bloomfield nurse missing since Aug. 2.

Four handlers from the Sturgeon Volunteer Fire Department and two German shepherd dogs -- one a scent canine and the other a cadaver dog -- did not turn up Janet Cervone, 57, of Bloomfield.

The black 2006 Volkswagen Jetta belonging to Cervone smacked into a concrete barrier several times 3 a.m. Monday near the Parkway West's Carnegie on-ramp, about 10 miles from her apartment on the 300 block of South Pacific Avenue.

While emergency dispatchers recorded callers saying that an individual was in the crashed sedan, when state police officers arrived, the Jetta was in the passing lane with no one inside.

"We're searching by the tracks in Carnegie now," said Pittsburgh police Major Crimes Lt. Daniel Herrmann. "This is a very strange case. We don't know if she staggered away from the accident disoriented, or if something else happened to her."

Police describe the brown-eyed Cervone as about 5 feet 3 inches tall, weighing 110 pounds, tanned, with fading, short red hair tinged with a henna dye and usually pinned in the back. The license plate of the Jetta, like the tattoo on her right bicep, reads "Rudy C."

Neighbors told the police and the Tribune-Review that Cervone -- a recently unemployed nurse dependent on an inhaler to treat her emphysema -- was last seen around 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 2. She had complained to friends that her stomach hurt and that she was going to sip ginger ale and stay in for the night. The back door that led from her apartment to her car was padlocked and chained, but the front door was open.

Cash and change had been left in the apartment, along with her cell phone, inhaler, a bottle of Advil, a cup of coffee, laundry and dishes to be washed. Also left behind was her aged, blind cat -- a pet her neighbors said she doted on and would never abandon.

There were no signs of struggle at the apartment, according to police and neighbors. Her car was last seen at her apartment about midnight Aug. 2, three hours before the collision in Carnegie. Detectives don't know if she drove the Jetta to Carnegie or if she was a passenger. Pittsburgh officers have taken possession of the car

Neighbors are feeding the cat. She had lived on South Pacific Avenue for nearly two decades.

Authorities ask that anyone who can assist them in finding Cervone telephone them at 412- 323-7800.

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