ORLANDO, Florida – A week into the disappearance of Haleigh Cummings, law-enforcement officials vowed Monday to find the missing Putnam County girl.
About 60 officers continued to search for the 5-year-old from Satsuma who vanished last week from her family’s mobile home while her father’s girlfriend slept.
Putnam County Sheriff Jeff Hardy said during a televised news conference that investigators have identified another area they plan to canvass within the next day or so.
“We’ve not abandoned this search,” Hardy said.
Investigators will now be taking a more “tactical” approach to looking for Haleigh, said Florida Department of Law Enforcement Special Agent-in-Charge Dominick Pape.
Texas EquuSearch, the volunteer group that organized a search for Haleigh during the weekend — and helped look for Caylee Marie Anthony in Orange County last year — concluded its work in the rural area.
The search is not limited to Putnam, and investigators said they will go wherever needed until they find Haleigh. They continue interviewing people, and evidence is being evaluated at a crime lab.
“We will continue searching until she is recovered,” Pape said.
During the conference, the investigators briefly discussed a sexual predator wanted in Marion County but said he is not considered a person of interest in Haleigh’s disappearance “today.”
Chad Eugene Reynolds, 25, who was convicted in Putnam in 2003 of lewd or lascivious molestation of a child younger than 12, has not been seen since he left his mother’s Ocklawaha home for a Super Bowl party Feb. 1.
Marion officials alerted Putnam County investigators about Reynolds after Haleigh disappeared. At this point, authorities don’t think the two are connected, Marion County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Jenifer Fisher said.
Hardy said he remains hopeful investigators will find Haleigh.
Detectives are asking that anyone who has information on the child call Crime Stoppers of Northeast Florida at 1-888-277-8477.