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Haleigh Cummings Not Found; Search Continues Near Satsuma

8:21 PM, Apr 13, 2010   |    comments
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Video: The Search for Haleigh

  • 2010 search area for Haleigh Cummings
    

PUTNAM COUNTY, Fla. -- Police have converged on the St. Johns River following a tip in the disappearance of Haleigh Cummings, but have not found anything yet.

"We have not found Haleigh," said Putnam County Sheriff Jeff Hardy today.

Hardy vowed that the investigation would continue" as long as it takes." The search has ended for the night, but will resume in the morning, according to officials. 

MORE FROM SHERIFF HARDY

The sheriff's office said this morning that authorities were acting on a tip received Monday, but kept details of the search close to the vest. The search is focused along the St. Johns River between Welaka and Satsuma near county Road 309.

Haleigh's family members left the Putnam County jail earlier this afternoon, where Hardy said officials had conducted interviews with the family for about two hours.

According to a friend of the family, Lisa Finnley, the atmosphere at the office had been tense, saying some members of the family were in tears.

PEOPLE INVOLVED WITH THE CASE

Asked if she had closure, Haleigh's grandmother Teresa Neves, Ronald Cummings' mother, replied, "No, that's all I can say" as she was leaving.

Haleigh's father, Ronald Cummings, who has been in jail on unrelated drug charges was among the family taken to the sheriff's office. He was returned to Putnam County jail in shackles afterwards.

Misty Croslin, Haleigh's former stepmother, has been in St. Johns County jail on drug charges unrelated to the case. Today, she was taken out of the jail but remained in police custody. according to a public information officer for St. Johns County Office confirmed that Croslin remains in custody.

She returned to the St. Johns County jail this afternoon. Her attorney Robert Fields, said today that the tip did not come from his client.

Several law enforcement boats have been scouring the river near the boat ramp at the end of Shell Harbor Road, which is blocked off by deputies. The river area where police are now was searched about a year ago.

Deputies also are going door-to-door talking to neighbors along that road.

The nature of the tip, the type of search being conducted and the specific location are being withheld because of the sensitive nature of the investigation, said Putnam Lt. Johnny Greenwood.

There will be no statements issued unless warranted, he said.

Haleigh, 5, was last seen in her father Ronald's home in February 2009.  Ronald's then-girlfriend Misty Croslin, now his ex-wife, said she put Haleigh to bed that night, and that was the last anyone saw of her.

Since the disappearance, there have been extensive interviews,  but no arrests; detectives have said Croslin knows more than she's saying, but is not a suspect.

MORE: COMPLETE COVERAGE OF THE SEARCH FOR HALEIGH

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