Caleigh's family claims abduction, police say not likely
ROCKPORT, Mass. (WHDH) -- As state police divers returned to the water near Long Beach in Rockport Thursday to search for a missing 2-year-old girl, family members say they believe the girl may have been abducted.
Crews continued their search for Caleigh Harrison, who was reported missing around noon last Thursday. Her mother told investigators she turned away from Caleigh and her 4-year-old sister for a couple of minutes to retrieve a ball, and Caleigh was gone when she returned.
Officials say so far there have been no signs of the girl. Family members told 7News that they now believe she may have been abducted.
“When somebody is lost on the beach, where’s the first place you look? You look in the water,” said David Harrison, Jr., Caleigh’s uncle. “Where would be the best place to steal somebody? From the beach, because while a hundred people are looking in the ocean, you’re in Pennsylvania.”
Caleigh’s mother said she took her eyes off her daughter for no more than two minutes to retrieve a beach ball. When she returned, Caleigh was gone.
“It’s possible that somebody took her -- they were all in the water looking for her because that’s the first place they’re going to go is the water, so while everybody’s looking in the water somebody could have been getting in the car and driving away with her,” said Catherine Curcuru, Caleigh’s aunt.
After officials’ search concluded for the day Wednesday, state police said they met with Caleigh’s family, explaining they have no evidence to suggest there was any sort of an abduction.
"We are not saying with 100 percent certainty that an abduction wasn’t possible, what we’re saying at this point is that we have found no evidence to support that theory,” said David Procopio, Mass. State Police spokesperson.
“Anything is possible, so we’re not giving up on anything,” said Harrison.
Family and friends of Caleigh continue to circulate flyers on the North Shore.
“We think it’s very possible that somebody took her,” said Harrison. “Not that we’re not saying the efforts in the water are unappreciated, it’s that if she is out there we want to make sure people know she could be out there.’”
Thursday's dive was the last scheduled dive, though state police did say that they would search the waters again if any new evidence is discovered.