‘Tell the police’: Family of missing 5-year-old girl begs for possible kidnapping witnesses to come forward as hundreds gather for vigil

A crowd of hundreds gathered in New Jersey on Saturday evening to hold a vigil for missing 5-year-old girl Dulce Maria Alavez.

According to Fox 29, several hundred concerned citizens met for the vigil at Bridgeton City Park, where Dulce was last seen late Monday afternoon. The circumstances of her disappearance are not known, although an eyewitness or eyewitnesses reportedly told police they saw a Hispanic male with red pants and orange sneakers “leading” the girl to a red van with tinted windows. On Tuesday, authorities issued an AMBER Alert for Dulce, identifying the male as a suspect and seeking information about the vehicle. In a news conference on Friday, Cumberland County Prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae characterized that man as a “person we want to talk to,” and the police chief said that investigators did not have any strong suspects.

Dulce’s family begged for any potential witnesses to come forward.

“It’s already been five days that she’s been missing and we just beg the people if they know something to tell the police,” Dulce’s cousin Yiesica Hernandez told FOX 29.

“It’s hard to describe how my family and I feel,” Hernandez continued. “She was a happy little girl. She would always call us and say ‘When you coming to my house?’”

Multiple law enforcement agencies and local business have contributed to a reward pool that had reached $35,000 as of Friday. Authorities said in multiple news conferences that any possible witnesses who contact police will not be questioned about their immigration status.

Anyone with information about Dulce’s disappearance is urged to contact the State Police Missing Persons Unit at 609-882-2000, ext. 2554 or the Bridgeton police at 856-451-0033. You can also text anonymously to TIP411.

For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast.