‘UFO’ still puzzling residents and an expert

By Laura McVicker, Columbian staff writer

Published:

Updated: February 24, 2011, 8:37 PM

 

Reported sightings of alleged unidentified flying objects in east Vancouver last weekend apparently still have everyone stumped.

Peter Davenport, the director of the National UFO Reporting Center, gave an interview to Seattle Weekly this week, saying he thought the peculiar object spotted Sunday night was the star Sirius.

He clarified his remarks Thursday, saying that was just conjecture after seeing raw video of the UFO. He now backs off that theory.

“I don’t know what it was,” Davenport said. “I don’t believe it was a star. The object moved off. Stars don’t do that.”

Davenport was talking about the highly-publicized sighting of a saucer-shaped object hovering low in the sky over far east Vancouver just before 7 p.m. Sunday.

The UFO was seen by several residents, who live off Southeast 192nd Avenue, and reported to 911 dispatchers and, later, to the National UFO Reporting Center in Eastern Washington. The center, formerly based in Seattle, is now in Davenport, west of Spokane.

On the heels of that sighting were several residents who have since reported to The Columbian seeing the same strange object in Ridgefield and the Orchards area.

Eleven-year-old Joey Studdard saw a different object the night before from his backyard off 188th Avenue. Joey and his mother, Daphne, were outside on their deck Saturday evening when they suddenly saw an object with bright purple and red lights in the sky. Unlike Sunday’s UFO, this object wasn’t saucer-shaped.

“It was almost like a trail with blinking lights,” Daphne Studdard recalled. “It was nothing like we’d ever seen before.”

She and Joey also saw the alleged UFO the following night, but they said it moved only side to side and not up and down like the other object.

But just before you think we’re being invaded by aliens, Davenport offered other earthly possibilities. He said the objects could be homemade devices, such as a kite with LED lights or a Chinese lantern. But, he stressed, the evidence is still too scant for him to hypothesize further.

Whatever it is, “I find it to be quite intriguing,” Davenport said.