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911 call reported missing woman's SUV before she was found dead

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TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Her erratic driving is believed to have even prompted a 911 call, but a Southern Arizona woman died in the desert before authorities found her.  Now, questionable judgment calls are being made  after a driver dialed 911 on Sunland Gin Road in Pinal County near the desert where Alzheimer's sufferer Mary Black's SUV was found, and she died.

"Totally in the other lane now.  Totally in the left lane going southbound," a 911 caller told Pinal County Sheriff dispatch.

"Okay, so in the opposite lane?" the dispatcher asked the caller: "Yeah, they're bouncing from the fog line on the right, clear over to the fog line on the left of the road now," he responded.

The caller described a white SUV with the same license plate as the one for Mary Black.  She went missing a few hours earlier on that day, Nov. 24, a Sunday.  But the Pinal County dispatcher didn't know that.

"I do have a deputy en route but he's not directly, he's in the area right now, he's coming from a different area," the dispatcher later told the caller.

Black's Explorer was found a few days later, about 17 miles south of where the call was made.  Her body was discovered in the desert nearby the next week.  Pinal County Sheriff's Office responded with this statement: "A citizen had called in the vehicle as being driven recklessly.   Pcso dispatch sent a deputy to try to locate the vehicle but he couldn't find it.  Hours later after Cochise (county) entered the vehicle into (National Crime Information Center) they received a delayed response indicating the plate had been ran by our office.  When Cochise called to inquire a dispatcher told them it had been a sound alike plate, not the same plate.  We are looking into how this error occurred."

This is one more incident in the case that angers Black's daughter, Mary Ann Black.

"They had her. They had her and they told our sheriff that it was a sound alike?" she said.

Mary Black suffered from Alzheimer's and a Cochise County timeline showed that she had left the house several times before.  A Cochise County deputy first searched locally before the attempt to locate went statewide five hours later.

Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels said he'd be in Phoenix this week, and push for a silver alert system, which would be similar to the Amber Alert for children.

Copyright 2014 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

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