4 Years Later: What Missing NJ Girl Dulce Alavez Might Look Like
BRIDGETON — Four years after Dulce Alavez disappeared from a playground, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children released a photo showing what she may look like as a 9-year-old today.
Despite an investigation that has gone beyond New Jersey and a constant social media presence, Dulce is still missing.
Cumberland County Prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae released a photo in the hope that someone may recognize Alavez even as she gets older.
"We’re asking everyone to take a look and see if there’s something familiar about this face. Remember, we’re no longer looking for a 5-year-old and a child can change a lot in four years. We know our images can work. We just need the right person to see this and make that call," NCMEC spokeswoman Angeline Hartmann said in a statement.
A vigil will take place at the Dulce Tree and Garden on Saturday afternoon in the same park where she was last seen.
Hope that Dulce is alive
Cumberland County Prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae continues to hold out hope that Alazvez is alive.
"We believe someone knows something that will help us determine and hold accountable the person(s) responsible for Dulce's disappearance. We do not care about your immigration status if you are a witness in this matter. We follow up on every tip that we receive," Webb-McRae said in a statement.
Are there any suspects?
Dulce's mother Noema, in a preview of an NBC Philadelphia special about Dulce, said that her family is still considered suspects in the case.
She says police searched the home she shares with her children, parents and grandparents "years" after the disappearance.
"Sometimes I think they are too concentrated on me and probably the person who did this they just don't notice," Noema told NBC Philadelphia.
Mc-Rae Webb said that until they know what happened to Dulce the day she went missing no one has been cleared as a suspect.
In interviews over the past four years, Noema and her family have denied any involvement in Dulce's disappearance.
Noema was sitting in her car helping a cousin with homework and scratching lottery tickets when her daughter went missing.
Investigators are looking for this man
In a post on the department's Facebook page, Webb-McRae shared a picture of the man who represents the most concrete lead in the case, a police sketch of a man wearing a baseball cap seen in the park around the time Dulce went missing. Webb-McRae at the time said he was not a suspect but a possible witness.
Information about Duce can be called into 800-CALL-FBI (225-5324) option 4, option 8, reported anonymously by calling Bridgeton police at 856-451-0033 or texted to Bridgeton's TIP 411 text service by texting "Bridgeton" plus your tip to 847411.
A $75,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible still stands. The money was put up by a number of people and organizations including Dr. Phil McGraw who added to the reward after an interview on his TV show.