Missing Colorado girl’s backpack, water bottle found
Westminster, CO, United States (4E) – Searchers have discovered the initial clue to the disappearance of 10-year-old Colorado girl Sunday after her backpack and water bottle were found more than six miles from where she was last seen Friday.
According to authorities, they received a report that Jessica Ridgeway’s abandoned or tossed backpack and water bottle were lying on the sidewalk of a Superior subdivision and investigators cannot say how long it had been there.
The Westminster Police Department tweeted a message telling people to keep out of the area and let the tracking dogs and officials do their job. The backpack’s discovery has moved the intensive search on a new location.
An Amber Alert was issued last Friday nearly eight hours after the girl disappeared.
Jessica’s mother, who is not identified, informed police that she saw her daughter on her way to school Friday morning. A night-shift worker, she called the attention of the authority late afternoon after waking up and finding a phone message saying Jessica did not show up in class.
Westminster Police Detective Trevor Materasso said that the eight-hour delay mean that the distance that the missing girl could have wandered even on her own gets huge.
Jessica is enrolled at the Witt Elementary School which is about a mile away from her home.
Last Saturday, more than eight hundred volunteers combed trails and hillsides around Jessica’s home while police officers and FBI agents manned road blocks and some knocked on doors.
Officials said that Jessica’s father, who lives out of state, is in a custody battle with Jessica’s mother.
The father was in a Missouri courtroom Friday for a child-custody hearing but police believe the custody issue is not related to her disappearance.
Materasso said that there is no a person of interest and they are going to look at every angle multiple times.
Jessica is 4 feet 10 inches tall, weighing about 80 pounds with blond shoulder-length hair and blue eyes. She was last seen wearing a black puffy jacket, blue jeans and pink and purple colored glasses.
Anyone with information is asked to contact police by calling 303-658-4360.