NEW ORLEANS (CBS/AP) Houston oil executive Douglas Schantz was supposed to meet his daughter at the New Orleans airport for an early morning flight back to Houston on March 5, but never showed up - which his family says is completely out of character.
Schantz, who is president of Sequent Energy Management based in Houston, was in New Orleans on Thursday night to donate to Tulane University on behalf of Sequent. Afterward, he and a group of co-workers went out for dinner, finishing about 11 p.m., Mark Homestead, a Sequent vice president, said.
On Bourbon Street, Schantz casually separated from the group without mention, which was not unusual. His co-workers figured he was headed back to the hotel.
Police say Schantz did check into the Royal Sonesta earlier at about 3:20 p.m. Thursday, according to the Houston Chronicle.
Hotel spokeswoman Roberta Grove told the paper that the hotel has been completely searched. Hotel officials believe Schantz checked in, placed his personal belongings in the room and left. They don't believe he ever returned.
Police say Schantz's credit cards, ATM card and cell phone have not been used, making them fear foul play.
New Orleans detectives and several private investigators hired by the company searched the French Quarter through the weekend.
The time-consuming part of the investigation, police said, is obtaining copies of surveillance footage from business owners and homeowners near Bourbon Street, where he was last seen.
Schantz's son, Michael, 25, was in New Orleans to help pass out flyers in the hopes that someone saw something. "My dad was fearless. He always thought he would be safe," Michael Schantz said. "Something bad just happened at the wrong time. He knew the city pretty well."
Anyone with information is asked to call 911, the New Orleans Police Department at 504-821-2222, Detective Gwen Guggenheim at 504-658-5300, or Crime Stoppers at 504-822-1111.