State and Essex police are excavating an area off of Vermont Route 15 in a search for a couple that went missing in June 2011.

Police used a backhoe on Thursday to excavate as state police dog examined the soil as it was removed from the ground.

William and Lorraine Currier of Essex Junction, Vt., were last seen leaving their jobs at Fletcher Allen Health Care on June 8 around 5 p.m. Officials suspect foul play is behind their disappearance.