Many unanswered questions remain in the search for missing 5-year-old Dulce Alavez, over a week after she went missing from Bridgeton City Park in New Jersey.
As CrimeOnline previously reported, the boyfriend of Dulce’s mother — who is not the little girl’s father — was taken into ICE custody last week after he was questioned about Dulce’s disappearance NBC 10 now reports that an ICE official has confirmed the boyfriend has since been released.
The 27-year-old man “is part of an ongoing investigation by local, state and federal law enforcement partners and ICE cannot comment further,” the official told the news station, and refused to comment on whether the boyfriend’s detention had anything to do with the missing persons investigation.
It is also unclear if authorities are questioning Dulce’s father, who is or was living in Mexico, according to local reports citing interviews with Dulce’s mother. Cumberland County Prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae declined to comment on the father’s role in the investigation, and would not confirm whether authorities believe he was in Mexico at the time of Dulce’s disappearance on September 16, or where he is now.
Webb-McRae did say that investigators are working from an assumption that Dulce is still alive. A massive, extensive search of the park and surrounding area showed no sign of the girl or any human remains, leading investigators to believe that she will not be found there.
In a media release on Tuesday, the prosecutor’s office said it had received numerous tips and “a significant amount of video, both commercial and residential, from the area the missing child was last observed.” The release notes that a red vehicle depicted in video broadcast on NBC 10 had been investigation, with any connection to Dulce’s disappearance being ruled out.
Webb-McRae confirmed to CrimeOnline that authorities had already determined the vehicle had no role in the investigation prior to the the video being shared in the local media.
The media alert reinforced earlier appeals for possible witnesses to come forward, including an option to do so anonymously.
“Anyone that possesses any information that they believe would be pertinent to this investigation is urged to call 1-800-CALL-FBI, OPTION 4 and then OPTION 8 or text your information to TIP411 subtext ‘Bridgeton,'” the alert reads.
“Anyone with video or pictures may upload same to http://www.fbi.gov/alavez.”
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