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Lopes disappeared from her home in the 2100 block of Woodland Heights Glen in the 481-acre gated community of Emerald Heights in Escondido, California on August 28, 2008. Her husband saw her at home at about midnight. At 10:30 a.m., she wandered into a home where her son used to live, about a twenty-minute walk away, and the new owner told her to leave. The owner called the police that afternoon, after she realized Lopes was missing. She has never been heard from again. Lopes's niece's puppy was found on a nearby hill after Lopes vanished. It's possible she was taking the puppy for a walk early in the morning and got lost.
Lopes has wandered away from home before, but never for longer for several hours at a time. Her family planned to buy her a tracking device to wear, but she disappeared before they could get one. She is thought to be on foot, as she has no access to a vehicle. An extensive search of the neighborhood turned up no sign of her. The Emerald Heights community has security cameras at the only entrance gate, but the cameras didn't film her leaving. Her case opened 2018 by Psychic Brian Ladd.