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Entries in Jogger (2)

Tuesday
Oct232012

Police 'Certain' Jessica Ridgeway Case Linked to Attempted Jogger Abduction

The Ridgeway Family(DENVER) -- Authorities hunting for the person who killed and dismembered 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway said Tuesday there is a "definitive link" between her case and the attempted abduction of a jogger in the same area earlier this year.

Police also warned that the killer is "still in the community."

"We are able to make a definitive link," Westminster Police Department spokesman Trevor Materasso told ABC News. "We're certain that there's a connection between the two cases and that's how we're moving forward with the investigation."

On May 28, at around 1:15 p.m., a 22-year-old woman was running on a trail around Ketner Lake when she said a man tried to grab her from behind, police said. The woman said he tried to put a rag over her mouth that had a chemical smell. She was able to get away and call 911.

The suspect was described as a white male, between 5-feet-6 and 5-feet-8 with brown hair and average build.

Jessica Ridgeway vanished five months later on Oct. 5 when she left for school. The fifth-grader never showed up at a nearby park where she was supposed to meet friends for the one-mile walk to her elementary school.

After an extensive search of the area, including knocking on doors and FBI road blocks, Jessica's dismembered body was found on Oct. 10 in an Arvada, Colo., park, miles from where she was abducted.

Though the public has been on edge during the hunt for the suspect who killed Ridgeway, investigators are asking the community to be patient, saying that they must be very careful about what they disclose since the killer is on the loose.

"We don't have the perpetrator identified," Materasso said. "He is still in the community and considering the heinous nature of Jessica's case, we have to be even more careful that we're not disclosing information that could hinder our ability to identify or apprehend the suspect."

Authorities announced last week that they were turning their attention to two earlier attempted abductions at Ketner Lake.

Investigators said that they were looking into a possible connection between the cases "due to the time frame and geographic proximity of Jessica's disappearance and the attempted abduction."

Police said they were concerned that a jogger was chased by a man in the same area in July 2010. The suspect described in 2010 was similar to the case from this year, but authorities are not saying that the 2010 case was related to Ridgeway.

"We're still concerned about the 2010 case, but at this time, we're not able to make a definite connection one way or another," Materasso said Tuesday. "We don't make a connection lightly."

He said police are also looking into a case reported in Aurora, Colo., this week where a woman said that a man in a parking lot tried to put a towel over her face while another man in a car asked for directions. She was able to fight the man off and get away.

"The Aurora police department is conducting an investigation in their city and working with our team of law enforcement, but, at this point, there's no way for us to say if there is any connection," Materasso said.

Police are asking that anyone with any information regarding Ridgeway's abduction or the attempted abductions at the lake please contact them at 303-658-4336 or by email at PDamberalert@cityofwestminster.us.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Mar212012

Body Found Is Possibly Missing Montana Teacher Sherry Arnold

Joseph Devenney/Getty Images(WILLISTON, N.D.) -- Investigators believe they have found the body of a Montana teacher who went missing while out for a jog on the morning of Jan. 7.

"While a positive identification has not been made at this time, it is believed the remains are those of Sherry Arnold," said a statement by David Johnson, special agent in charge of the FBI's Salt Lake City Division and Frank DiFonzo, the police chief in Arnold's hometown of Sidney, Mont.

On Tuesday, agents from an FBI evidence response team and local police began to recover the remains of a female found near Williston, N.D., the statement said. Williston is about 45 miles from Sidney.

The remains are being sent to a lab to confirm the identity and police said they would not release any further details.

"We want to thank God for all the amazing people and their prayers, help and continued support in bringing Sherry home to her family," Arnold's aunt, Janet Earhardt, told ABC News Wednesday.

Two Colorado men are in custody in Arnold's disappearance, charged with aggravated kidnapping.

The location of the body across the state line from where the kidnapping occurred means there could be federal charges against the two suspects in the case, Michael Keith Spell, 22, and Lester Van Waters Jr., 47, both of Parachute, Colo.

Spell and Waters pleaded not guilty last month to one count each of aggravated kidnapping during an arraignment in state district court in Sidney. They face a possible death sentence under Montana law if convicted.

Court documents filed by the prosecutor in the case indicate Spell has confessed to a role in a crack-fueled abduction and presumed killing of Arnold. Authorities have said Spell attempted to take FBI agents to the site but could not find it.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio