Police release video of missing Colorado girl
Ryan Summerlin October 9, 2012
WESTMINSTER – Authorities scoured a suburban Denver neighborhood for clues and urged people to be on the lookout Tuesday for a 10-year-old girl who disappeared days ago on her way to school.
Police released more photos of Jessica Ridgeway along with a short home video, saying it would help the public learn her mannerisms and the sound of her voice.
They’re asking the public to notice some of the fifth-grader’s distinguishing characteristics, such as a small gap between her two front teeth and a sore on the top of her nose below where her eyeglasses sit, adding that she might not be wearing glasses.
Jessica Ridgeway was last seen Friday morning after leaving home to meet friends at a Westminster park on her way to school.
Police say the only item found so far that they can link to the girl is her backpack, found on a sidewalk in a neighborhood about six miles north of her home two days after she went missing.
Police had it analyzed at the state crime lab after taking DNA samples from her family.
Jessica Ridgeway’s mother along with her father, who lives in Missouri, also planned to make a plea for her return in an interview with a Denver television station Tuesday.
Denver media reported that an FBI evidence team arrived at the girl’s home after family members left to record the interview. FBI spokesman Dave Joly confirmed some team members were at the home but declined to discuss what exactly they were doing.
Police spokesman Trevor Materasso implied that investigators were focusing attention on a possible abduction but refused to comment on what techniques police were using as they try to find her.
“We don’t want to miss anything. We’re going to cover our tracks,” Materasso said.
He said her family has cooperated in the investigation from the start.
Searchers have also scoured open areas near where the backpack was found. Authorities planned to wrap up a search of some fields near her home on Tuesday and continue interviews with residents in Jessica’s neighborhood.
Authorities got a late start searching because her mother works nights and slept through a call Friday from school officials after Jessica didn’t arrive for classes.
People in the area have been moved to help in the search.
More than 800 volunteers turned out for Saturday’s search, and over 400 leads have been called in to a tip line. Some of those volunteers planned to hold two vigils for Jessica in the evening.