AP NEWS
Related topics

Utah Police Change Focus of Probe

June 11, 2002

%mlink(STRY:; PHOTO:MSGX107-061002; AUDIO:%)

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) _ Police said Tuesday they are refocusing their investigation into the kidnapping of a 14-year-old girl, concentrating on those who knew Elizabeth Smart while not ruling out a stranger abduction.

``We believe that it is possible that we have already talked to or will soon talk to the suspect that is responsible for this crime,″ Police Chief Rick Dinse said.

Investigators spent several hours in the Smart home early Tuesday morning, searching for clues to the girl’s apparent kidnapping at gunpoint a week ago.

Investigators were now focusing on someone who had access to the neighborhood or the house, although not necessarily a family member, Dinse said.

``We don’t have an identified suspect, but we do have some analysis of what this suspect is like,″ he said. ``While we have not located Elizabeth or identified a clear suspect, we have made progress.″

Police said they have ruled out the possibility that the girl staged her own abduction and was a runaway.

So far, police have received 6,000 leads, of which 600 were worthy of followup.

AP RADIO
Update hourly