Police scale down search for missing Ariz. girl

AP News
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Posted: Oct 14, 2011 6:39 PM
Police scale down search for missing Ariz. girl

Police on Friday scaled down the number of officers and volunteers searching for a 5-year-old Arizona girl who has been missing for three days after they found no hard evidence.

Jahessye (JES'-ee) Shockley was last seen by her three older siblings at her Glendale home Tuesday evening after her mother ran out for an errand. Police believe she left their apartment through the front door but do not know anything about what happened to her next.

They have no hard evidence to indicate that she was kidnapped, but about 100 officers and volunteers found no sign of her after combing through a three-mile radius around her house, including searching in trash bins, swimming pools and shrubbery.

"The statistics show that as the hours go by, the chances that you're going to find her are reduced," Glendale police Sgt. Brent Coombs said. "We're hoping for the best but preparing for the worst."

Police also have interviewed and searched the homes of registered sex offenders in the area.

"They were contacted almost immediately," Coombs said. "You always want to rule that out."

The search for Jahessye continued Friday, but was scaled down from 100 people looking for her to about two dozen in a less intensive search. Police also were following up on about three dozen tips they've received about the case.

"We're looking for that missing piece, any bit of evidence," Coombs said.

Authorities canceled an Amber alert Friday that had been issued for the girl because she has been missing much longer than the typical eight to 10 hours that Amber alerts last.

Police have said the girl's parents weren't suspected in her disappearance.

Jahessye's mother, Jerice Hunter, declined to speak to The Associated Press but told KNXV-TV on Thursday that she just wants her daughter back.

"She's somebody's child _ mine," Hunter said through tears. "Please bring my child home."

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