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By Alyssa Erdley
Observer Staff 

Urgent: Local Engineering Student with Mental Health Problems is Missing

Dane's mother says her son suffers from mental health issues, and she believes he is going through a paranoid and suicidal episode


January 3, 2022

Dane Elkins's mother and friends have been searching for him since he abandoned his car around 8:20 pm near the 5 Freeway and Templin Highway in Castaic on December 20. Deborah Elkins, Dane's mother, says her son suffers from mental health issues and she believes he is going through a paranoid and suicidal episode.

Dane Elkins and his mother Deborah

A student at UC Santa Cruz, Dane is 20 years old, 5 feet 11 inches tall, 170 pounds with brown hair and green eyes. He was possibly spotted in Reseda at a gas station on Christmas, according to a friend, walking around apparently jittery and nervous.

The family has hired a private investigator and has organized searches, including this morning, of the area around Dane's abandoned car. A Facebook page ( is available to coordinate efforts to find the young man.

If anyone thinks they see Dane, they should keep a discreet distance because of his paranoia, take photos for confirmation, and call 911 or the LAPD's Missing Persons Unit at 213-996-1800. During non-business hours, call 1-877-527-3247. Those who wish to provide a tip anonymously can call Crime Stoppers at 800-222-8477.


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