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Elizabeth Smart Press Conference

Aired June 20, 2002 - 13:09   ET


FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: We need to go out to Salt Lake City where family members are addressing reporters and cameras now in the search for 14-year-old Elizabeth Smart.

TOM SMART, MISSING GIRL'S UNCLE: ... great strength and character. She plays the harp like an angel and she rides a horse like a cowboy. She's unbelievable. And she's a young woman. She's growing, and she's probably almost the size of my sister here, not quite.

Knowing her inner strength and the prayers of all, we have faith that she is alive and that someone will bring her home to us. As far as the searchers and that every person is a searcher in a way -- I had one of the best Father's Day I've ever -- the most memorable Father's Day. I rode a horse alone in the wilderness for 20 miles, and found in the middle of calling out for Elizabeth. It's a heightened awareness we all need to know because we don't know where she is; we just feel she's coming home. And we're asking all of the community to have that awareness.

As a family our attempts to bring Elizabeth -- we realize that we are human. In a family, we have a saying that there's a smart way to do things and their is an intelligent way, and they're not always exactly the same thing. We joke -- we are who we are. But we have two personal heroes in our Smart family. One is my father's mother, Avon Smart, and one is my father -- is my mother's father, Ira B. Sharp (ph).

Avon received a degree in Michigan in the 1920s, came home to her husband, after which they lost everything they had in the Depression of the 1930s. After scraping for years in the sheep business, they basic -- they sold the farm and invested in GoodYear (ph) to go back and -- invest in real estate in Los Angeles area.

She continued her education. She was a very educated woman. She used to sit in on philosophy classes at UCLA. The teachers knew her and loved her, because she was there, and they let her audit the classes. She was a scholar of the Old Testament but she loved Thoreau. Her favorite saying that she is instilled in all of us, though, is from Shakespeare, and that's, "This above of all else, to your own self be true."

Ira. B. Sharp, my mother's father, was also in the sheep business. He had seen some of the rougher elements of life, as he pulled sheep herders out of the city and back up on to the ranch. He was converted to a higher power later in life, and he was very dogmatic about it, and he would go to each of his grandchildren, and he would thump them on the chest and say, you dumb guy, you know that something is higher, and he would challenge us to read scripture and do this. And we joked back and forth but he was a very, very powerful man.

As family, he loved us beyond words, and we hear the echoes of his words today. We are part of them. Our family is part of our forbearers. We can see slowly becoming like our mother and our father. More than they can imagine, they are the greatest heroes in our lives, brothers and sisters.

The love and trust in the Smart family is amazing. Our love is essentially no different than it was a year ago, although we are closer today than ever. Just like many other families around the world embracing love and faith.

Until two weeks ago, my brother Edward's wife Lois was the only Francom (ph) that we really knew as a family. We love their family and continue to do. We doubt that there is a family with more faith and love than the Francom (ph) family. We love them through the most endurable hell anyone can imagine.

Our family is about as good as it gets, we really believe that. And we say that in humility, because we know we're strong and we know each other. We try our best. Please let us not lose sight of bringing Elizabeth home. Please continue to search, pray, be aware, be full of hope.

God bless you all.


Before I start, or before I allow you to start, I want introduce a couple of people. You now Dan Roberts from the FBI. Next to him is Lieutenant Corey Lyman (ph). He's the Elizabeth Smart task force commander, in charge of the investigation going on. Next to him is assistant chief Scott Fulsome, who is in charge of investigations for our department.

I bring them here today, partially because, although I truly enjoy the interchange that we have from time to time, some of these individuals may also be in place here. I don't have anything to add at this time to the investigation. So I'll take questions.

QUESTION: Can you tell us anything about what you have found on computers taken from members of the Smart family?

DINSE: No, I can't.

QUESTION: Can you tell us if the Smart family gave up their computers when police asked?

DINSE: They did. We had received the computer we asked for, yes. QUESTION: Immediately?


We have a total of 12 computers that we have had in our possession, and most of which have been returned back.

QUESTION: Did you request those computers?


QUESTION: Can you tell us who they came from?

DINSE: Not at this time.

QUESTION: Can you tell us if you found anything on those computers that is relevant to this investigation?

DINSE: We have found nothing on the computers that creates a nexus to this crime.

QUESTION: How about questions, not a nexus?

DINSE: Well, there's certainly questions, and those questions have been asked and responded to.

QUESTION: Chief, yesterday you talked about that you thought the suspect was reachable. A lot of us heard that word, and were wondering what reachable meant. Does that mean reachable by cell phone? Reachable by Internet, reachable by IM, or here in Salt Lake City. Can you define what you mean by "reachable?"

DINSE: Well, it wasn't a Freudian slip. It was just a choice of words that probably may have been a poor choice. What I was trying to say was that we believe that we will locate this person eventually, and we believe we will identify him -- or them. But there was nothing else hidden in that comment.

QUESTION: To follow-up, since day one, there was -- we asked you originally had there been a ransom? Two weeks later, has there been any communication with anybody or a ransom put on Elizabeth Smart?

DINSE: We don't have anything of a ransom request that I'm aware of, other than one thing that came through an e-mail to a media, which came to us as early as I believe Monday or Tuesday of this week, and it was after the fact. The ransom was a unique number, not related to any of the monies that you've heard, and it came to us after the ransom was supposed to be paid, and nothing has happened. So we don't put a lot of credence on that.

QUESTION: Can you expound on that. Was there a ransom actually asked for Elizabeth Smart?

DINSE: There was an e-mail that asked for a ransom. That's the only one I'm aware of. But it came to us very recently, and it was after the fact of the date that the ransom was supposed to be paid, and nothing has happened that we're aware of.

QUESTION: Are you taking that seriously, chief?

DINSE: No at this time we're not taking that seriously, no.

QUESTION: On what basis are you discounting it?

DINSE: Well, we haven't heard anything more on it.

QUESTION: What was the amount of money, if I might ask?

DINSE: You know, I don't recall at this point. I just don't recall. It was less than the amount of money that was asked for.

Keep in mind, our ransom is for the -- I should say the family's ransom for the safe return -- it's not a ransom, it's a reward, for the safe return of Elizabeth.

QUESTION: Respectfully, my last question on this then, is other than that, has there been any communication from outside by a possible suspect to the family or to the police department in this investigation?


QUESTION: Chief, the family believes that it has hope that the girl is still alive? Can you gives us your thoughts? Is there reason, evidence to believe that she's alive?

DINSE: Well, we're as hopeful as they are. You know, until we determine otherwise, we're taking the approach that she is, and we will continue to do that until we find out otherwise.

QUESTION: Chief, were the computers personal computers of the family or where they part of Ed Smart's business.

DINSE: Most of these were personal computers, and one of them, I think, some of them had been business computers, also.

QUESTION: Which means were they used by employees?

DINSE: You know, I couldn't comment on how many people used them, other than the ones that came from the Smart family were personal computers and I believe one had some business on it.

QUESTION: Aside from the computers, have you found anything in the lifestyles of members of the Smart family that you think is relevant to the investigation?

DINSE: We have not at this time found anything that creates a nexus to this crime in the lifestyles or on any of the computers that we've reviewed.

Somebody over here.

QUESTION: Do you think Elizabeth might have used those computers and has she been contacted by anyone? Is that what you were looking for, and is that what you found.

DINSE: That's what we were looking for, for the most part, was did we have anything that indicated that Elizabeth was talking to or receiving information or e-mails from other individuals. We found nothing on any of the computers that we looked at that had determined that she had any communications with anybody.

QUESTION: How about if other family members had communication with anybody else, possible perpetrators?

DINSE: Well, obviously, we found communication with other people. We found nothing that led to a nexus to this crime.

QUESTION: Is the computer analysis ongoing?

QUESTION: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) ... ransom mention on it?

DINSE: You know, that escapes me. I came to me -- it was handed to me briefly as early as maybe -- I have to -- the time escapes me. I think it was probably Tuesday afternoon that I fist saw it, and I think the timeframe was like over the weekend.

QUESTION: Are you tracking the author of that e-mail for prosecution of any type?

DINSE: You can be assured that we are investigating it.

QUESTION: Have you cleared any members of the family? Have you ruled anybody out?

DINSE: As I said, we are ruling nobody out until we focus in on a suspect.

QUESTION: There was a report last night that three people in the area had been questioned and had been cleared, I believe is the word that was used. Is that true?

DINSE: Well, I hope I didn't say that, because that isn't -- to my knowledge, that's not the case. There's a lot of people we're not now focusing on, but that doesn't mean that at some later time, we might not come back and look at them.

QUESTION: Does that mean members of family you are not now focusing on, or are you still focusing on each member of the family?

DINSE: We're not focusing on any member of the family at this point, but we haven't excluded any member of the family either.

QUESTION: Is their a focus at all to the investigation?

DINSE: Yes, there is focus to the investigation. We have been -- as I said yesterday, we have many leads that we're following up, and some of those leads are very promising leads.

QUESTION: Is there any indication that Elizabeth may have been taken across state lines or across borders, into Canada or into Mexico, and if the FBI wants to answer that, that would be great, too.

DAN ROBERTS, FBI: The short answer is no. But we have had numerous leads that have taken us interstate on sightings and things like that. As you all are aware, there've been other kidnapping cases that we've been looking at in the region, specifically in Idaho Falls. I think you're all familiar with that case, as well as the case up in Portland, Oregon, where the two missing girls up there.

So we haven't ruled anything out at this point, and a number of the leads have taken us interstate, especially the look-a-like leads that we're getting in from Mr. Edmunds.

QUESTION: Possible sightings of Elizabeth.

ROBERTS: No, they're most largely possible sighting of Mr. Edmunds.

QUESTION: Did the FBI or did the Salt Lake City police ask for the computers from the Smart family?

ROBERTS: I think the answer to that is both. I think we were working together. I think the teams are such where there's an agent and a detective paired up on all the investigations. So I think the answer to that is both.

QUESTION: After you made the request, how long did it take for the Smart family to hand over the computers, specifically Ed's computer?

ROBERTS: I don't remember offhand. It was forthwith, but I don't remember how long it was, wasn't a long time.

QUESTION: When we asked for it, we got the computer.

ROBERTS: You said at this time, you found no nexus either between the computers and lifestyle in this case. At what stage are you of the analysis of the computer and examining the lifestyle issue?

DINSE: Well, we're mostly done with the computers. I think there may be some computers out there, but I don't believe they are Smart family computers. And we are still looking at every aspect of this case. And the background of the family has been looked at, and as I said, we don't have a nexus. But we're not eliminating anybody.

There is a question here.

QUESTION: Chief, the leads that you're talking about that are particularly promising. Are these new leads that have come in relatively recently?

DINSE: These are part of the 1,271, or almost 1,300 leads I described yesterday leads that we've received over the period of this investigation. And they're just some of those leads that we're continuing to follow up on.

QUESTION: ... or any additional polygraph test secondary, perhaps?

DINSE: We're not excluding any possibility of additional polygraphs or interviews.

Over there.

QUESTION: Those 400 or 500 leads you said yesterday you still have to pursue. Do any of those have something in common enough to lead you in any certain direction in this case?

DINSE: Well, you know, I can't comment on all of the 400 leads that we have or are looking at. There's certainly some of the leads that we're looking at that are taking us in certain directions. Whether those pay fruition and we come -- or to fruition, and we come up with a suspect out of all of that, or suspects, we have not at this time been able to do that.

QUESTION: How many polygraph test have been administered so far?

DINSE: I don't know. We've administered several.

QUESTION: And only the family members, or outside the family?

DINSE: I'm not going to discuss -- well, I tell you, we have both inside and outside.

QUESTION: Do you anticipate, have any family members been given polygraph test more than once?

DINSE: That I'm not going to comment on.

QUESTION: Would it fair to ask at this point, how close are you to an arrest in this case?

DINSE: More (ph) closer than I was yesterday. How is that? We're not closer than we were yesterday.

QUESTION: How much closer than two weeks ago.

DINSE: Maybe closer than two weeks ago.

QUESTION: Maybe closer.

QUESTION: In terms of this mention that the abductor may be a trusted member of the community, have any trusted member of the community turned up missing?

DINSE: I guess you're looking for as a suspect, as a potential suspect. Not to my knowledge.

QUESTION: In terms of Mr. Edmunds, you said he's wanted for questioning. But is there any indication he had any sexual proclivities or an alternative lifestyle?

DINSE: I couldn't comment. I don't have that knowledge. QUESTION: Chief, yesterday, you said you were focusing the investigation in the area of the house and the neighborhood. What further are you planning to do to further that effort?

DINSE: Well, you know, we're continuing to do exactly what we had started out to do. We've gathered a lot of information from focusing on neighborhood, and the people in the area, and those who had access to the residence, and we're following up on all of those, and we will continue to do that follow-up in hopes of bring a resolution to this.

QUESTION: As I understand it, the neighbors have been interviewed, or at least, most, if not all the neighbors has been interviewed. You have police checkpoints. What beyond that is a consequence (ph)?

DINSE: You know, Brian, I can't comment on what I don't know is going to happen out of any information we have. We may get some information that will take us back there and will have to reinterview some people or show photographs. There's a number of things that could occur in this investigation, and it's just impossible for me to speculate that point.

Over here.

QUESTION: Are you still looking at the construction workers that were working on the house? And do any of them have criminal records?

DINSE: We are looking at everyone who hood an opportunity to visit the house, have access to the house or around the house. And we are looking at their records also.

QUESTION: Are you administering any additional polygraph test to friends or neighbors?

DINSE: The potential is, we will be administering more polygraphs. As to who that's going to be, I'm not going to discuss.

QUESTION: Have any friends or neighbors taken polygraph test and them came back.

DINSE: I'm not going to identify any of the people who have taken polygraphs, either by location or by individual.

QUESTION: What about some of the construction workers or people who toured the home? Have there been any polygraphs administered among that population?

DINSE: I have the same response. I'm not going to identify which ones. We have administered polygraphs both inside the family and outside the family.

Over here.

QUESTION: Are you getting close enough to have enough evidence to obtain a search warrant for a residence or a business in the area? DINSE: I'm not going to discuss where we at that investigation, our investigation.

QUESTION: Chief, there's been a lot of talk about how much this investigation is costing. Are you getting close to a point, where obviously, you will continue to investigate this case, but you're going to just have to scale back?

DINSE: Well, at some point in time, there will come a point when we will just scale back, just based on the number of leads and follow- up information that we have available. Right now, we're not at that point. But you're right, sometime we'll have to evaluate it and do that.

QUESTION: Are there any other missing persons that you are trying to identify who might be connected to this case? Anyone else missing that could...

DINSE: As a victim or as a suspect?

QUESTION: As a suspect.

DINSE: There's nobody at this point that is -- I mean, other than Mr. Edmunds, obviously, we'd like to find and talk to. And there undoubtedly will be additional people out there that we would like to identify. But there is no one I can specifically say is missing that we want to find. That would have -- an investigator would probably know that best, but I think I would probably know about it.

QUESTION: Your description of the suspect, you sort of described an affluent dapper Dan, if you will? Do you believe that this suspect in any shape or form has a prior criminal history?

DINSE: You know, we're looking at criminal history of all the people that we're focusing on, so that's just one aspect of it. And it possible, obviously, that he could have one.

There's a question over here.

QUESTION: What type of things do you have in the lab right now? Do you have hairs, fibers, DNA, anything like that? Can you tell us about anything about what's in the lab?

DINSE: We have forensic evidence in the laboratory being analyzed. Beyond that, I'm not going to describe what it is.

QUESTION: ... something from the outside perhaps?

DINSE: We have things from within the family, not necessarily evidence, but things from, for instance Elizabeth. We have things that belong to her, and we have other forensic things that we've taken for purposes of elimination in case we find items that we would want to compare to, so.

QUESTION: Anything else missing in the home besides her shoes. Any other items missing? DINSE: We can't determine at this point that there's anything missing as we speak, and we've looked at that and had the family look at that, and to the best of their knowledge, there's nothing missing, other than the shoes.

QUESTION: Any plans to talk to Mary Catherine again?

DINSE: It's possible we might talk to her again. Right now, we don't have anything on the map to do that.

Right here.

QUESTION: Regarding the time frame when the police were called after it was discovered that Elizabeth was abducted, do you have any concerns, or has that been explained in a way that you're comfortable? You don't think that factors into the investigation at all?

DINSE: You're talking about the fact that the...

QUESTION: Such a delay apparently in the...

DINSE: From the family notifying us. Obviously, the delay didn't help things, but we understand the delay, and we've accounted for the delay, and at this point, we think it's understandable.

QUESTION: How have you accounted for the delay?

DINSE: Well, the delay was a 9-year-old who was very fearful of her life, and she he's hesitated to notify her parents.

QUESTION: Have you counted on the delay in terms of the notification from the parents to the police?

DINSE: Yes, we have. And we believe that the first call to the police was at 4:01 in the morning to us, and we know that for sure. If your question is, was that the first call that the family made, we believe it was, and we believe we have satisfied our questions regarding that.

QUESTION: Have you talked to the bishop and the state president? There have been reports that they called them first?

DINSE: We talked to a lot of people, including church members, yes.

QUESTION: Did you find anything in the house that did not belong there that you can share with us?

DINSE: I really can't comment on that at this time.

QUESTION: Chief, we've been reporting that this investigation has narrowed (UNINTELLIGIBLE). Certainly doesn't sound that way. Are you concerned at this point?

DINSE: Am I concerned that it doesn't sound like it to you that's it's narrowed? No, I'm not concerned about that. QUESTION: You're really not narrowing this investigation at all. It's kind of a shotgun investigation at this point, still?

DINSE: Well, what we're not doing is answering your very pointed questions about the investigation, where we're at and what we're doing. We're at -- you know, the investigation is a critical part of what we are doing here to solve this case and get her home and safe, we hope. And we're not telling you a lot of things that we are doing and -- and we have. And we're doing that purposefully to protect that investigation.

So you know, you may interpret that we're shot-gunning it, but we are attempting to, and, in fact, are trying to narrow our focus to individuals. Now, we haven't done that yet. But that doesn't mean we are not trying to do that.

QUESTION: Yesterday you said you took Mary Catherine and actually drove her around. What were you looking for that -- you know, in a car with her?

DINSE: Well, we were looking for a particular route that they had described that the two of them had gone jogging on, on occasion. That's what that -- as I remember that's what that trip was about.

QUESTION: Was the occasion the night before the kidnapping?

DINSE: I believe it was.

QUESTION: Was that when she saw a strange car in the area? Or before that?

DINSE: I don't know if -- there was several strange cars reported there. I don't know which one you're talking about. But we've -- we've managed to identify most of those strange cars.

QUESTION: Mr. Roberts, can you maybe answer a question?

ROBERTS: Maybe. Depends on what the question...

QUESTION: Have your folks come up with a motive? Was it sexual, was it someone who was socially inept? Do you have any idea of what kind of person this is and what the motive might have been?

ROBERTS: They've looked at a lot of theories, and they have not settled on one in particular in this point. And that's certainly one of -- The sexual motive is certainly one of the things that they're looking at. But I don't believe at this point, and we haven't seen their full written report yet. We've been consulting with them, as you know, right along. And they were actually out here. But they have not pinned down to one particular motive at this time.

QUESTION: So you've got sexual. Is there another one?

ROBERTS: It could be anything. It could be burglary gone bad, could be just a peeping Tom type of thing that got caught. I mean, there's a number of different things you could look at there. QUESTION: Have you identified the whereabouts of the extended family? My impression is this family is very large. The extended family -- have you pinpointed their whereabouts at the time of Elizabeth's disappearance?

ROBERTS: That's one of the basic questions that we cover initially with the family members, all of the family members. Actually, virtually anybody -- witness -- potential witness in the case that we talk to, is where they were on that night and what they were doing. And check on their alibis. That's pretty common and basic stuff.

QUESTION: What have you found? Have you determined to your satisfaction that all of the family members accounted for their whereabouts?

ROBERTS: We feel very comfortable so far with what the family has told us. They have been very cooperative from the start and have no reason to doubt anything that they have told us about their alibis at this time.

QUESTION: Is there anything on the computers that is troubling, perhaps information deleted from the computers, files deleted, in the last two weeks?

ROBERTS: That's probably something the chief can answer better than I. I am not sure about that.

DINSE: To the best of my knowledge, we have found nothing that appeared to be deleted.

QUESTION: Have you found anything illegal?

DINSE: We will take five more questions, and then we will have to break this off.

QUESTION: Have you found anything illegal on those computers?

DINSE: Not to my knowledge.

QUESTION: Has there been any red flags from Elizabeth's school or the potential high school, like maybe a possible teacher? We know that Elizabeth was active in track; she was being recruited to be on the track team at the local high school. Have any of those teachers, male teachers, have they been looked at, or are there any suspects from the school or here at the church?

DINSE: We have looked at all of those leads that have come in regarding the school, church and other locations. And as of right now, we have not focused in on any suspect as a result of that.

QUESTION: Chief, there is word that there is a tabloid report that's due out tomorrow from one of the major tabloid magazines in America that really outlines some pretty salacious material having to do with the family and perhaps inappropriate behavior. Could you characterize if that's appropriate in this case, if it has anything to do with case or if it's irresponsible?

DINSE: I am aware and I have heard of that publication and what -- that they are going to come out with some information. I have not seen it. I have not specifically seen the information that they are going to publish. I have been told something about it, and at this time I am not in a position to comment on it. I can only reiterate that the family has been very supportive of us. They have done everything that we have asked them to do. And they have been very candid with us. And at this point, that's really all I can say and comment on.

QUESTION: Where does your investigation stand in relation to possibly ruling out other criminal cases of unsolved murders, you know, like a couple in Utah or even abductions out of state?

DINSE: Well, we are clearly looking at all kinds of possible connections to other crimes and localities around here. So far we have not found a nexus to it, but that doesn't mean sometime later we might not. Two more.

QUESTION: ... computers: You returned both of them to that...

DINSE: Well, we -- 12 computers and going through the hard drives and examining, depending on how much information are on those hard drives, can be somewhat tedious. So we have -- probably have some that we're still going through. But I believe all of the family's have been returned. One more.

QUESTION: What labs are looking at those?

DINSE: Well, we have a state lab with FBI assistance. OK. Thank you very much.

WHITFIELD: All right. You've been watching the police chief, Rick Dinse, as he addresses reporter there, along with family members, all agreeing this has been a very taxing situation for the family, for the investigators, for the volunteers. All in their search for 14- year old Elizabeth Smart.

Just moments ago as you watched here on CNN, the family members say they are trying to remain strong, even though we just heard from the police chief there, who says there are no real developments in this case.

Today is no different than yesterday as it pertains to their search for 14-year-old Elizabeth Smart. And a man they want to question, who is still at large, Bret Edmunds.

Let's bring in our Ed Lavandera. He's in Salt Lake City, and he's been following this from the very beginning. Ed, the police chief says they've left no stone unturned, at least that's what they believe. They've checked the family, they've checked the school, they've even checked the family's 12 computers. Ed, what do you get from the level of frustration that these investigators may be exhibiting? ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think what they're going through is checking so many leads; they've mentioned that they'd gotten 10,000 leads. About 1,300 of those they found to be credible. They have gone, as of yesterday afternoon, I don't think they mentioned this just a little while ago, but they have gone through 900 of them.

Of course, that requires a lot of man-hours. The FBI and the local police here are working very closely together. You might have heard the FBI agent mentioning that there is a FBI agent and a Salt Lake City police officer working together and all about 100 officers working this case. And they have been doing so for the last 15 days now. So from that sense it is so many different leads and so many different directions that they are looking into, that I think it is an exhaustive search, to say the least.


DINSE: We don't have anything of a ransom request that I am aware of, other than one thing that came through an e-mail to a media, which came to us as early as, I believe, Monday or Tuesday of this week. And it was after the fact. The ransom was a unique number not related to any of the monies that you have heard. And it came to us after the ransom was supposed to be paid and nothing has happened, so we didn't put a lot of credence in that.

QUESTION: Can you expound upon -- I'm a little confused on that. Can you expound on that? Was there a ransom actually asked for Elizabeth Smart?

DINSE: There was an e-mail that asked for a ransom. That's the only one I am aware of, but it came to us very recently. And it was after the fact of the date that the ransom was supposed to be paid. And nothing has happened that we are aware of.

QUESTION: Are you taking that seriously, chief?

DINSE: Not at this time, we're not taking that seriously, no.


LAVANDERA: Again, one of the many avenues they are pursuing: E- mail messages, as you heard mentioned. Also they're going to -- looking into the possibility of more polygraph tests on -- perhaps more for family members and other members of the community here, as they continue to look everywhere, focusing in on members of the church, the school or anywhere that Elizabeth Smart might have participated in.

You also probably saw the painting that the Elizabeth Smart's parents unveiled there at the beginning of the press this morning. There was also taken out a full page ad in the Salt Lake City paper this morning, a copy of that picture and a message of support and thanks to the community here. So many people involved in the search for Elizabeth Smart and the family expressing their gratitude for all of this. Also, throughout the neighborhood last night, there was a group of kids who went up and down the neighborhood putting up light blue balloons and ribbons all over the neighborhood, so as you approach the church here, for about a mile you can see all of these balloons. And it almost seems like there are also new pictures, I believe, of Elizabeth Smart that have been posted up everywhere.

The family urging -- they've focused their efforts here in searching for Elizabeth Smart all over the state. They say that they have organized about 70 percent of the entire state of Utah in this search, as they urge people to take different routes to work. Different places; instead of jogging your normal route, perhaps jog a different route that you might stumble across some sort of clue, anything.

So the family really urging that search to continue for just anyone who might have a spare moment to continue that search, as well. And to always remember to keep your eyes open -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: And light blue, because that the family has said that that is Elizabeth's favorite color. Now, Ed, we also heard the police chief sort of talk about what may be ahead. Among those possibilities, they may want to go back and talk to the 9-year-old sister, Mary Catherine?

LAVANDERA: Mary Catherine, who has been over last 15 days, you heard the police chief mention that if it weren't for Mary Catherine, that many -- much of the information they have up to this point would have been impossible to have to obtained.

So they're very grateful for the amount of information she's been able to provide. They have done four formal interviews with Mary Catherine, we understand. And they also say that there have been other types of interviews, as well. For example, you heard the chief alluding to -- that she had been driven around the neighborhood. So there have also other interactions like this which aren't part of those four individual interviews. And again, there's still the possibility that they might continue to go back with her.

One other thing about all the information she has been able to give police, we've asked if, with all of this information and these details about how big suspect is, what he was wearing, and the dark hair on the arms and on the back of hands, why hasn't there been a sketch put out of the suspect? Police say that they have done this on purpose. That they have deliberately not put out a sketch of the suspect, for reasons that they don't want to elaborate on at this point -- Fredricka.

WHITFIELD: All right. Ed Lavandera from Salt Lake City. Thank you very much.




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