Bridgeton 5-year-old, Believed Abducted, Now Tops FBI’s Most Wanted
The father of a 5-year-old believed to have been abducted from Bridgeton last week recently started a custody fight for his daughter from his home in Mexico, her mother told NBC Philadelphia.
Dulce Maria Alavez has been missing since the afternoon of Sept. 16. She is now at the top of the FBI's Most Wanted kidnapping and missing persons list.
Dulce was last seen walking toward a red van with a man at Bridgeton City Park, according to Bridgeton police. As the investigation progressed, an Amber Alert was issued by State Police.
Police are looking to speak with a man described as light-skinned, possibly Hispanic, between 5-foot-6 and 5-foot-8 with a thin build, no facial hair, and with acne on his face. He's been described as wearing orange shoes.
The girl's mother told NBC Philadelphia that the FBI has spoken to Dulce's father, who she identified as Edgar Perez. Bridgeton Police Chief Michael Gainari earlier said that investigators wanted to speak with Perez and believe he is still in Mexico.
Perez did not at first believe that Dulce was his daughter but realized he was after seeing her resemblance to him, Noema told NBC Philadelphia.
Noema also told NBC Philadelphia that Dulce' 3-year-old brother told investigators a man waved his arms as if to gesture him to come over. Bridgeton police said the boy ran away and went to his mother, who was sitting nearby in a car.
Cumberland County Prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae on Tuesday said that "investigators have been and continue to analyze any and all information received as well as the hundreds of tips that have been received through the FBI tip line at 800-CALL-FBI.
"We are operating under the premise that Dulce is alive. We are asking the public be vigilant in reporting any possible sighting or information that they believe would lead us to locating the whereabouts of Dulce," Webb-McRae said in a statement.