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Police have profile of kidnap suspect

Mother: 'I know we're close'

Elizabeth Smart
Elizabeth Smart  


SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (CNN) -- Salt Lake City police said Tuesday that investigators have developed a working profile of a suspect in last week's abduction of 14-year-old Elizabeth Smart from her home.

"We believe that it is possible we have already talked to, or will talk to, the suspect involved in this crime," Police Chief Rick Dinse said at a news conference. "We are pulling [out] all stops and encouraged in bringing a conclusion to this investigation."

While a suspect has not been identified, investigators have developed an analysis on what he is like and have an idea of a motive, Dinse said, adding that the abductor may still be in the area.

"My message to the suspect is, 'We're going to get you,' " Dinse said.

The police chief said progress has been made in the investigation, including in the areas of forensic evidence, crime scene analysis and promising leads.

He said police have received more than 6,000 leads, about 600 of which were deemed to be worthy of following up. About half of those leads have been investigated, and some have proved "very promising," Dinse said.

Based on those leads and other information, he said, "We believe that we have the opportunity to be successful in this case."

'Be strong and be ready'

The girl's parents, Ed and Lois Smart, appeared before cameras Tuesday afternoon to thank the hundreds of volunteers searching for the missing teen, as well as to thank people around the country who have sent messages to the family.

While the parents did not take any questions about the investigation, Ed Smart expressed optimism that his daughter was alive and that she would be found soon.

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Investigators in Utah say they have developed a working profile of a suspect in the abduction of 14-year-old Elizabeth Smart from her home. CNN's Frank Buckley reports (June 12)

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CNN's Frank Buckley says police are re-targeting the search for Elizabeth Smart to the area surrounding her home (June 11)

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"We know that we are so close -- so close -- and we know that because we feel it in our hearts," he said. "[We] ask this person, 'Please release Elizabeth. Please let her go.'"

Lois Smart, wearing a necklace given to her by Elizabeth, had a message for her missing daughter.

"I love you. I think of you every minute. And I know we're close. You're going to come home, Elizabeth. Be strong and be ready to come, because you're going to be with us soon," she said.

Sister gave police new details

Authorities began re-focusing their efforts Tuesday on the upscale Federal Heights neighborhood after interviewing the missing girl's 9-year-old sister, Mary Catherine, for a third time Monday night.

In addition to the two girls, the Smarts have four boys, all of whom were in the home during the abduction.

The sister previously said she witnessed the abduction and that she did not tell her parents for at least two hours because the man threatened to kill her.

"We did learn some things about the suspect we didn't know before," Dinse said of the latest interview with the sister.

Dan Roberts, the assistant FBI special agent in charge, said he could not elaborate on specific information the sister divulged, other than it was useful.

"That was certainly part of the puzzle that we've put together to narrow our focus back up in the neighborhood again," he told CNN.

The new investigative focus also followed an overnight search of the sprawling, tree-shrouded 6,600-square-foot home in a cul-de-sac by forensics experts that lasted until 3 a.m., Dinse said.

Roberts said FBI agents and police detectives would now conduct "house-to-house" interviews of everyone in the neighborhood.

"Clearly, we are looking for somebody that was comfortable up in that area," he said. "Anybody that's been through that neighborhood we want to stop and talk to."

Roberts also said the FBI has used polygraph tests "throughout this case" on several people, although he would not elaborate. Previously, police had only said the girl's father submitted to a lie-detector test on Sunday.

"I'm not going to comment on what the results of those polygraphs have been," Roberts said.

Asked if anybody had been ruled out as a possible suspect, Roberts said, "Nobody's ruled out. The girl isn't back in custody and until that happens nobody will be ruled out."

While a suspect has not been identified, police with the aid of the FBI's behavioral science experts have developed an analysis on what he is like and have an idea of a motive, Dinse said.

The chief said authorities believe the suspect "knew Elizabeth" and "had access to her."

"That doesn't mean he was personal friends with her [or] that he was somehow related to her. It only means he had access or made access in some fashion to her: That could be stalking [or] he could've been there for legitimate reasons," Dinse said in an interview with Fox News.

He said investigators have spoken with contractors and real estate agents in the area, "and all of those things are all possibilities." The seven-bedroom, six-bathroom home is for sale for more than $1 million.

"We are going to revisit those situations and those individuals we have contacted in the past," Dinse said.

Authorities have said Elizabeth was kidnapped at gunpoint from her bedroom about 1 a.m. last Wednesday, while her parents slept. Police received a phone call at 4:01 a.m. that she had been taken.

Dinse would not comment on a news report that the abductor might have entered the home through a window to the bedroom Elizabeth shared with Mary Catherine.

Police have described Elizabeth's abductor as a white man, 5 feet 8 inches tall, wearing a white jacket and white baseball cap and armed with a black hand gun.



 
 
 
 






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